Looking to build off of their impressive EFL Cup victory in midweek, Stoke will host a struggling Hull on Saturday afternoon at the Bet365 Stadium.
Starting with the hosts, while Stoke would have been left hugely disappointed by their 2-1 defeat away at Derby last weekend, the Potters did make an immediate response when turning their attention to EFL Cup duties. Making the trip to recent Premier League returners Watford on Tuesday night, Michael O’Neill’s side picked up an eye-catching 3-1 win on their travels. Collecting a top-flight scalp in midweek, the former Northern Ireland boss still finds his side sat in the play-off spots. Looking to drag over their midweek success, Stoke should also be boosted by what has been a largely impressive record on home soil. Including a 2-1 win against Huddersfield when returning from the international break, Saturday’s hosts are unbeaten in any of their six matchups at the Bet365 Stadium since opening the 2021/22 campaign, mustering themselves five victories.
As for the visitors, while Stoke might find themselves battling it out at the top of the Championship table, Hull are enduring their own scrap at the opposite end. Tipped by many across the Championship to be hit with an immediate League One return this season, Grant McCann’s struggling squad have had little to cheer about so far. Last seen putting in what was another worrying display on home soil, the Tigers were hit with a 3-1 drumming against Sheffield United at the KCOM. Despite opening the new season with an eye-catching victory against Preston, Hull are now in the midst of an eight-match winless run across all formats. Collecting just a pair of points since the opening weekend, there is no doubt that Stoke should be smelling the chance to extend on their EFL Cup bounce here.