Paul Merson on what's next for Stoke's Champions League winners
Last Updated: 01/05/18 4:39pm
Stoke City are at risk of relegation ahead of their meeting with Crystal Palace, live on Sky Sports on Saturday, so what's next for their Champions League winners?
In Bojan Krkic and Ibrahim Afellay, who won it with Barcelona, and Darren Fletcher, Jese Rodriguez and Xherdan Shaqiri, who won it with Manchester United, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich respectively, Stoke have more Champions League winners than any other Premier League side.
But with Paul Lambert's side three points adrift of safety and games running out, what does the future hold for the high-profile quintet? And how have they fared this season? We asked Soccer Saturday pundit Paul Merson for his verdict.
Jese Rodriguez (13 Premier League appearances, one goal)
He's not really had that much of chance. He seems to have done alright but you just don't know what is happening in training.
People will be asking why he's not getting a chance but he could be strolling around behind the scenes, not putting the work in.
He must be talented to have played for Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain but if he's not got the work ethic he'll go on to somewhere like Espanyol next.
Bojan Krkic (14 La Liga appearances for Alaves, one goal)
He was playing with better players who were making him look better than he was at Barcelona. When he dropped down he showed his real level.
That's the problem with playing with players like Lionel Messi. They are always going to make you look better, so I imagine Stoke will look to cut their losses and move him on.
Ibrahim Afellay (six Premier League appearances, no goals)
It is the same problem again. His attitude just isn't right and that is why something has happened at training with Paul Lambert.
These players win something with Barcelona and they think they're the best, then they give attitude to managers at their next clubs.
Afellay told to stay away
Stoke City midfielder Ibrahim Afellay was told to stay away from the club for the rest of the season by manager Paul Lambert.
They think they're better than their team-mates because they've got a Champions League winners medal, but in reality it wasn't them who won it, it was the brilliant players they played with.
Darren Fletcher (22 Premier League appearances, one goal)
I like Fletcher and it is a completely different case for him. His attitude is great but time catches up on players. He'll always give you his all and he's a proper pro, but he just can't get around the pitch now.
The others you're talking about are nothing like him, so he'll probably be happy to give it a go in the Sky Bet Championship if he decides to carry on.
Xherdan Shaqiri (34 Premier League appearances, seven goals)
He'll go somewhere decent if Stoke go down. He can play and he makes things happen with his ability to do special things.
People will question his work-rate but that's not his job. Sometimes you need to the X-Factor to get out of trouble. If Stoke are to have any chance of staying up, then he's the man to save them.
Watch Stoke City v Crystal Palace live on Sky Sports Premier League from 11.30am on Saturday