20th February 2018

PREM PREVIEW MANAGERLESS STOKE FACE TOUGH ASK

MANAGERLESS STOKE FACE TOUGH ASK

12th January 2018

The Stoke Board have not rushed into announcing a replacement for sacked Mark Hughes this week. That's no surprise as they effectively have a 'free hit' with a weekend game at Old Trafford.

A new manager is hardly likley to make the difference that could see the Potters get a shock result.

Espanyol boss, QuiQue Sanchez Flores now heads the betting - Martin O'Neil has drifted has too Slaven Bilic. Flores did a good job at Watford last term and no shock he left as the Watford Board change the manager more times than is decent.

No matter, none of them will be at the helm at Old Trafford. You can't help thinking Hughes had lost the dressing room and Stoke may well play better.

United will prop up plenty of Accas but we advise caution. The players owe the fans as well as Hughes a 100% effort for once and no better place than the Theatre of Dreams.

Stoke can be backed +2 on the Asian at 10/11 and that looks a throw of the dice. Especially id United lose ground before they kick a ball on Monday night.

Elsewhere, Burnley face in form Crystal Palace. sean Dyche has seen his side play well and lose to Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City in recent games and draw at Old Trafford. This game will be more of a marker for the true Burnley.

Palace have been good recently but at 3/1 the visitors are too big on balance.

Leicester rested most of their first choice side in last week's cup tie at Fleetwood - with the big guns back they travek to Stamford Bridge. Chelsea are on a roll at the moment and have a good recent record against the Foxes, including a 2-1 win at Leicester earlier in the season. Chelsea might land the odds.

We like Watford to beat Southampton. Both sides had much needed wins in the Cup last time but home advantage suggests that 7/5 is generous.