Writer: Lloyd Reddin
Date:Sunday September 15 2013
15th September 2013 3pm
Attendance: 25, 052
Stoke City missed the chance to move into the top four after a goal less draw at the Britannia Stadium against reigning Premier League runners-up Manchester City.
In a game that was mostly played in the midfield, The Potters looking the more threatening and should have taken all 3 points and made it three straight Premier League victories, but couldn`t take the chances that came their way.
Mark Hughes continued Stoke`s evolution over his former side as they had the better chances in the game and looked the more creative.
Jon Walters missed a golden opportunity in the first half, whilst Stoke caused trouble in the Manchester City penalty area a number of times, but could not breach England`s number one goalkeeper Joe Hart between the sticks.
Manchester City had periods of prolonged possession but could only resort to several long range efforts that were never going to trouble Stoke`s Asmir Begovic.
The Citizens have yet to win at the Britannia Stadium since Stoke were promoted, losing one and now drawing the last four fixtures.
Walters had Stoke`s best chance, Charlie Adam, who managed to shake off a knock that was picked up on international duty, worked some magic on the right wing and produced an inviting cross for the Republic of Ireland international, but the former Ipswich man glanced his header wide when it seemed easier to score.
Kenwyne Jones, who has displaced Peter Crouch in the Potters starting line-up recently, nearly broke the deadlock after he raced clear but could only hit his shot at Joe Hart whilst one-on-one.
Manuel Pellegrini`s expensive new look frontline seemed to lack any understanding and could only create half chances. Alvaro Negredo, who made his first Man City start almost, nicked the lead though, but his curling effort didn`t have enough dip to trouble Begovic`s goal.
£22 million debutant Steven Jovetic also had an opening when he managed to find rare space in between Stoke`s centre halves but could only direct his volley into the travelling Manchester City fans behind the goal.
Stoke, who like to play more 'football` under Hughes still have their tenacity and familiar pressing game continue to push forward and search for a breakthrough.
United States defender Geoff Cameron found space on the right hand side drilled the ball across the face of the goal but Walters could only flick the ball across the goal face and wide of the post.
Stoke`s other full back Eric Pieters also ventured forward and put in an inviting cross but Kenwyne Jones could only head over from 8-yards.
Hughes continued to push Stoke forward in search of a winner and brought on deadline day signings; Stephen Ireland and Marko Arnautovic. The latter nearly made an instant impact in England as he created an opening after some clever footwork and hooked the ball into the Manchester City 6-yard box, where defender Nastasic nearly put into his own net but Joe Hart made an impressive instinctive save before Kenwyne Jones fired the rebound wide.
The Potters had a few injury scares towards the end of the match that put a sour note on the home side`s impressive display. Kenwyne Jones limped off and was replaced by Peter Crouch, whilst Robert Huth was knocked clean out by Negredo`s knee, but managed to carry on after lengthy treatment and managed to finish the game, even though he admitted he could see 18 Man City players via Twitter afterwards.
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Date:Sunday September 15 2013
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