Stoke v Bournemouth preview: Joe Allen returns for Potters but Xherdan Shaqiri sidelined
Last Updated: 21/10/17 7:28pm
Stoke City will be boosted by the return of Joe Allen for Saturday's game against Bournemouth but Xherdan Shaqiri looks set to miss out after suffering an ankle sprain.
Stoke were on the end of a heavy 7-2 defeat to Manchester City last weekend which resulted in them dropping down into 17th place in the Premier League table and they will be looking to make amends against struggling Bournemouth.
Hughes said: "We are only one win away from the top 10. It's very early days and we are positive going into the rest of the season.
"We should look forward to our next set of fixtures and aim to pick up maximum points from them."
Bournemouth are currently 19th in the Premier League table and they have suffered from a lack of goals so far, scoring just three in their opening eight fixtures.
Summer signing Jermain Defoe has found the net just once in seven league matches this season but Eddie Howe has backed him to rediscover his goalscoring form following an impressive cameo performance against Spurs.
"Jermain's a key part of our squad this season," Howe said. "Even when he came on at Tottenham we noted how bright he looked. He will score goals in this team.
"And we're lucky where we have a pool of strikers to pick from; when Callum Wilson comes back after his knee injury we'll have five outstanding strikers who would all say they deserve to start."
Peter Crouch (back) is another injury concern for Stoke, while Bruno Martins Indi (calf), Ryan Shawcross (back) and Tom Edwards (ankle) are also doubtful and Stephen Ireland (broken leg) is out.
Ryan Fraser must pass a late fitness test to feature for Bournemouth.The Scotland wing is battling a hamstring issue, while Brad Smith remains sidelined with a hip injury.
Callum Wilson is not quite ready for a Premier League return after a second long-term knee injury, and Tyrone Mings continues to fight a back problem.
After winning both games against them in 2015-16, Stoke failed to win either Premier League meeting with Bournemouth last term (D1 L1).
Bournemouth have lost four consecutive away games in the Premier League for just the second time (also November 2015). They last lost five consecutive away league matches in January 2008, in the third tier.
Since the 2015-16 season, only Tottenham (60.6%) have had a higher share of their goals scored by Englishmen than Bournemouth (51.9%).
No Premier League team has conceded more shots from inside the six-yard box this season than Bournemouth (12).
Since Mark Hughes took charge of Stoke at the start of the 2013/14 season, only Newcastle (9) have lost more Premier League games by 4+ goals than the Potters (8). Indeed, Hughes' total of eight defeats by 4+ goals in 160 games is one more than Tony Pulis (7) managed in 190 top-flight games with Stoke.
Jermain Defoe has scored a Premier League goal against Stoke with each of the three previous clubs he's faced them with (Portsmouth, Tottenham and Sunderland).
Paul Merson's prediction
Bournemouth did well last week against Tottenham, and were unlucky not to go in front before half-time. Eddie Howe also changed it up, which I liked, because they had got a bit predictable recently.
I think he might try and do the same again against Stoke, but Stoke should win at home, I rarely go against them!
PAUL PREDICTS: 2-1 (15/2 with Sky Bet)
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Sky Bet are backing Stoke to bounce back from last week's trouncing at Manchester City, pricing them at 11/10 favourites for the visit of Bournemouth, whose odds to win are the same as the draw, priced at 12/5. Jermain Defoe to return to the team and score first is 6/1, leading the Cherries' side of the first goal-scorer market, but Stoke's Eric Choupo-Moting is favourite to break the deadlock at 5/1. Stoke vs Bournemouth is included in this weekend's Super 6 round, with £250,000 up for grabs. Enter your predictions for free here.