Mohamed Salah not Liverpool's only threat, says Stoke boss Mark Hughes
By Matthew Treadwell
Last Updated: 27/11/17 5:13pm
Mark Hughes says Stoke must be aware of the threat posed by the whole Liverpool team and not become preoccupied with Mohamed Salah when they play them on Wednesday.
The Egypt winger has scored 15 goals in 20 matches for Jurgen Klopp's side this season, including the opening strike in Saturday's 1-1 draw with Chelsea at Anfield.
But Hughes - whose Stoke side lost 2-1 away to Crystal Palace at the weekend - wants his players to focus on the problems they could face from other Liverpool personnel.
"We are facing a player in Mohamed Salah who is clearly in the best form of his Liverpool career," said Hughes. "He has real technical quality and crucially, pace.
"But we can't be overly concerned with one player though because they have match winners all over the pitch. We need to nullify them on Wednesday.
"People say Liverpool are OK going forward but every time you attack them they concede but that isn't the case.
"They play with a high tempo and press which is maybe why they sometimes get caught out."
Defeat at Selhurst Park leaves Stoke 15th in the Premier League on 13 points, just three points clear of the relegation zone.
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Hughes highlighted sloppy errors as the reason they were undone by Palace but Hughes feels they can still secure a top-half finish come the end of the season.
"I thought we played well on Saturday but clearly the goals shape how people feel we did on the day. We need to cut the errors out," added Hughes.
"The performance was good enough to take something from the game but in the end it wasn't. Once we address the errors we will be fine because the performances are good.
"There seems to have been negativity since the start of the season really, and we can only dissipate that by winning games.
"You have to take a considered approach at times and take the emotion out of what you are doing right and wrong. I don't think we are far from establishing ourselves in the top half."
Hughes also gave short shrift to suggestions Xherdan Shaqiri, who scored Stoke's goal against Palace, will be leaving the Bet365 Stadium in January.
"He's contracted here, he's doing very well," said Hughes. "If anyone shows any interest in him, they'll be quickly rebuked.
"It's about what we are trying to do here, we need good players.
"We've been able to bring players like Shaq to the club, which maybe we haven't been able to before. And we want to add more of those types of players, that can change games and get people off their seats.
"Certainly if there is any inquiries for Shaqiri in January, they won't be given much encouragement."
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