Odemwingie secures third straight win for Stoke
Saturday 29th March 15:00
A single Peter Odemwingie strike was enough to give Stoke their third consecutive victory and secure another season of premier league football at the Britannia Stadium.
The victory means Stoke have collected their highest points total in a single month, since arriving in the top flight, this month and it has set the Potters on the way to a record breaking season. Mark Hughes has set his side targets of a top ten finish and a record point`s total, both seem well within the Potters grasp after a fantastic run of form, which has seen them lose just once in their last nine games in the Barclays Premier League.
Odemwingie has been a key component of Stoke`s recent form and his well taken goal was enough to beat Hull City in a tight affair on Saturday. The Nigerian international has been a revelation since arriving in a swap deal with Kenwyne Jones from Cardiff City, scoring 5 in 9 appearances including 3 in 3, games which have all ended with a Stoke victory. The Potters definitely seem to have got the better of the swap deal with Jones not having an impact in South Wales, swapping the inconsistent striker for the pace and goal scoring ability seems a master stroke from Hughes.
The goal was a typically well taken strike after capitalising on a loose pass mid way inside the Hull half, Odemwingie drove at the heart of the visitors defence before firmly planting his left footed strike past Steve Harper.
One goal always looked as though it would decide the game and the result was never in doubt once the home side took the lead, however Stoke once again found themselves thanking Asmir Begovic for one of the saves of the season as the Bosnian continued his fine form to keep yet another clean sheet. David Meyler`s deflected 20 yard strike would have beaten most goalkeepers but not the Stoke stopper who clawed it away when seemingly wrong footed. It was a save of the highest quality and will have caught the eye of many top sides.
Hull manager Steve Bruce was disappointed to lose the game and felt only individual mistakes cost his side the game and had Liam Rosenior not spermed a golden opportunity in the first half when he headed over unchallenged from 6 yards out. The tigers didn`t really threaten enough in the second half to deserve a point from the game and the result will leave them peering nervously towards the relegation zone as the end of the season approaches.
The Potters however will be looking upwards and setting their sights on a top half finish and beyond, only six points behind Newcastle in ninth place and they still have to visit the Britannia, there is still plenty to play for, for Mark Hughes` side. The Welshman has set ambitious targets for his players with his eyes set firmly on a record breaking points` total.
Stoke supporters will be very optimistic for the remainder of the season as they look to be heading to a record breaking season. The style of play that Mark Hughes has implanted is taking fruition with the Potters looking dangerous going forward, solid at the back and comfortable in possession. With Premier League status now confirmed, Stoke fans can relax and enjoy what is sure to be an enjoyable end to the season.