Stoke City vs. Stevenage: FA Cup Preview & Prediction
Three weeks ago when Stoke City beat Hartlepool 3-0 in the 3rd round of the FA Cup, it appeared that The Potters were headed for a 4th round matchup against Aston Villa.
Also three weeks ago though, Stevenage had other plans in the FA Cup — As The Boro’s upset Villa with a 2-1 comeback win to move on in the FA Cup to face Stoke City.
With no Championship match this weekend for The Potters, the club won’t be able to improve their 18th position on the Championship table. Instead, The Potters will have their focus this weekend on advancing to the next round of the FA Cup.
Stevenage walk into Sunday’s FA Cup draw against Stoke City in second with 55 points on the League Two table — The only previous meeting between The Potters and Boro’s ended with a 4-0 Stoke City win in 2016.
Stoke City vs. Stevenage Prediction:
Within the last week of the January transfer window, Stoke City have been able to pull off three moves so far to add to the team — Those moves being Ki-Jana Hoever, Bersant Celina, and Matija Šarkić.
Per manager Alex Neil, at least two of those new additions could be available for Sunday’s match against Stevenage. As for club injuries, also per Neil, the team minus a couple of players will be at full strength — Which Includes right fullback/wing-back Dujon Sterling who should be back and available for Stoke City on Sunday.
With all of that news above, that puts Stoke City in a great position for Sunday’s match. It puts Stoke City in a great position because of the club’s almost full health and new additions being available.
Meaning, Stoke City now have the luxury of the club they’ve been playing with the whole season and then some. What that all should equal is a team that has more than enough at least for Sunday to beat a lower tier club.
Now that doesn’t mean Stevenage will go out without a fight. Afterall, they just got done upsetting a Premier League team three weeks ago.
But a lot of what led to Aston Villa’s loss was a letdown in mentality and also a late red card. So if Stoke City can avoid a letdown in mentality and/or playing with 10 men on Sunday, they should be able to get the job done and advance.
Prediction: Stoke City advance to the next round of the FA Cup with a 3-1 win.