Coming off of a loss against Blackpool over the weekend, Stoke City will now look to get a positive result on Tuesday against Swansea — A win for Stoke City would mean the club moves up within two points of Swansea at 12th on the table — A loss however for Stoke City could mean The Potters fall even closer to the relegation zone, as the team sits just six points out of relegation position.
In order to ensure points on Tuesday, Stoke City will need to make sure they bring the best quality they can to the match — Which includes a few keys to the match that could mean the difference between grabbing points and not grabbing any on Tuesday.
Three Keys for Stoke City vs. Swansea
1. Drop-in Defensively:
So far this season Swansea have led the Championship in average possession percentage at 64.2%, per WhoScored. Meaning, Stoke City shouldn’t expect to possess the ball a lot on Tuesday. But that should be okay with The Potters.
Instead of worrying about grabbing more possession while out of possession, the team on Tuesday should focus on fully dropping in defensively when needed. The Potters on Tuesday should focus on getting numbers back behind the ball and looking to keep Swansea’s dangerous attack at bay.
2. Counter-Attack Efficiently:
With Stoke needing to get players back behind the ball, that’ll mean The Potters won’t have many open play possession style attacks. Instead, it’ll mean The Potters will need to launch counter-attacks when the opportunity arises to pounce.
But again, that’s not a bad idea tactically against Swansea. Per WhoScored, Swansea are tied for second worst in the Championship with 4 counter-attacking goals conceded — If Stoke City can counter-attack efficiently they might be able to move that number to 5 or 6.
3. Put the Ball in the Mixer:
The final key for Stoke City on Tuesday is take advantage of aerial duels. Swansea per WhoScored, are last in the Championship with aerials won per match at 8.9. The next closest worst number is Blackburn at 13.4.
The Potters themselves sit at 11th per match with 21 aerial’s won per game. That much of an advantage should be something that The Potters exploit. So whether it be playing longer up the pitch or putting the ball into 18-yard box on set-pieces, Stoke City should be looking to put the ball in the air and win aerials.