Former Potter Denis Smith is feeling optimistic about this season and predicts what Stoke will achieve come the end of the season in May.
Denis Smith, who made his first appearance in a Stoke City jersey 50 years ago, is feeling good about this season’s signings and how everything will fall into place at the end of the season as he spoke to the Stoke Sentinel:
"You should always be excited by new signings and have faith in the scouting network and management team’s decision making. I’m a bit more optimistic than everybody else seems to be because there’s a lot of gloom and doom out there."
These comments come after Wednesday’s announcement of the signing of Jesé Rodriguez on a one-year loan deal from PSG. The once Real Madrid wonder kid can have a huge impact on the Potters’ attack and Denis Smith sees what he, as well as the other signings, can bring to the table this year. Smith is also hesitant, though, of expecting great things out of all the signings that were made:
"A lot of work has to go into transfers and you won’t get them 100% right because they don’t always gel for whatever reason, be it their personality, the wife not settling into a new lifestyle, the kids not liking school abroad, or our lovely climate."
Smith has a point here. It can be dangerous for us to expect the world out of players like Jesé and Zouma. This doesn’t mean we should let our players off easy, though, when mistakes are made. It just might take some time for key players-such as Jesé- to make the big difference in the side that we are hoping for.
Seeing the players that were signed and how confident he is in Mark Hughes as manager, Smith predicts a modest league finish but some success in the Cup:
"I think we will finish around about half-way [in the league] and I’m hoping for a cup run. The disappointing thing last season was no cup run and no eye-caching wins against a Manchester United or a Chelsea."
If we can get back into the top ten while at the same time make a deep run in the cup, most of us will probably agree that it would be a successful season.
For all your Stoke City news and analysis, follow @AllStokedUpFS on Twitter.