Premier League: Mark Hughes' Stoke hold Manchester City 0-0 at the Britannia Stadium
By Follow me @danielstorey85. Last Updated: 15/09/13 7:37am
Charlie Adam: Impressed in Stoke's midfield against Manchester City
Mark Hughes' Stoke claimed 0-0 draw against his former club Manchester City in a Premier League game at the Britannia Stadium in which they largely dominated.
Neither side could force a goal, but Stoke's Jon Walters had the best chance to break the deadlock, and it was the hosts that looked the likelier to score throughout.
Manuel Pellegrini was without Vincent Kompany, David Silva and Sergio Aguero through injury, with Alvaro Negredo and Stevan Jovetic starting their first Premier League games. Hughes stuck with the side that won 1-0 at West Ham last time out with new signings Marko Arnautovic and Stephen Ireland on the bench.
Pellegrini's men started the brighter, with Samir Nasri striking the ball straight at Asmir Begovic and Aleksander Kolarov scooping the ball well over from 20 yards, as Jovetic and Negredo looked to build a striking partnership.
However, after 14 minutes, Stoke had a glorious chance to take the lead when Charlie Adam crossed the ball with the outside of his right foot, and Walters somehow headed wide from four yards out as it looked easier to score.
Best of the Game
- Player of the Game - Charlie Adam was easily the game's best player. His crosses found the head of Jones time after time, and he set up a glorious chance for Walters.
- Save of the Game - Joe Hart's reaction stop from his own defender Nastasic was fantastic. Marko Arnautovic's cross was dangerous, but the Serbian's touch could have ended in disaster.
- Miss of the game - Jon Walters is gaining a slightly unwanted reputation for mishaps, and his early headed chance was as easy as they come. Charlie Adam's cross was wonderful, but the Irishman somehow managed to glance his header wide.
- Talking Point - Joleon Lescott has struggled for form of late, but the decision from Manuel Pellegrini to opt for Javi Garcia in central defence given Stoke's obvious aerial threat was an odd one. Garcia does not have a defender's mentality, and his positioning and decision-making was often exposed. There will be fingers crossed that Vincent Kompany is fit for the Manchester derby next weekend.
As the half progressed, Stoke began to dominate, with Steven Nzonzi dallying whilst through on goal and losing the chance to shoot, with Pablo Zabaleta eventually clearing the ball from danger.
Then, just after the half-hour mark, the visitors were again guilty of being ponderous in possession. Nasri was robbed of the ball by Jones, and the Trinidadian forced Joe Hart into a smart save.
A minute before half-time, the visitors had their chance with a free-kick 25 yards out, but Kolarov persuaded Yaya Toure to allow him to take responsibility, and the set-piece was curled two yards over the bar.
There was still time for Adam to fire a shot at the midriff of Hart, but the hosts were unable to take what would have been a deserved lead into the break.
Stoke picked up where they left off in the first half, and should have taken the lead on 48 minutes. Geoff Cameron played in a wonderful low cross from the right, but the ball somehow beat everyone, most notably Walters, as it flew across goal.
Five minutes later Stoke had yet another opportunity. Adam played in a deep cross, and Jones rose fantastically in the box, but his header drifted just over before Adam himself had a strike from change shortly after, but Hart held well.
With 15 minutes left, a magnificent save from Hart kept it at 0-0. Matija Nastasic connected with substitute Arnautovic's cross, and would have scored an own goal but for Hart's reaction save before Jones' follow-up was clipped over.
The last meaningful action of the game was a nasty head injury to Robert Huth that caused six additional minutes, but the game petered out to a draw, a result cheered by Stoke's fans but not the travelling cohort of Manchester City blue.
Barclays Premier League
Barclays Premier League
|10||West Ham United||28||31|
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Stoke v Man City
Manchester City centre-back Matija Nastasic has admitted that his side need to improve their defensive game.
Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini insisted that his side's 0-0 draw with Stoke City was a good result.
Manuel Pellegrini believes his side faced a 'tough test' in their goalless draw with Stoke City.