Stoke City

Stoke City – 24 Apr 21:16

Ref Review: ?Atrocious? Boro star slammed; Arsenal get lucky

A look at all the controversial decisions during this weekend’s Premier League and FA Cup semi-final games with a number of high-profile incidents up for debate.

Refereeing decisions are regularly the source of debate among fans, pundits, players and managers so this season a five-strong TEAMtalk panel will be passing judgement on every red card (or avoidance of one), every penalty and any other major incident every matchday.

We’ll also decide on a weekly basis which side can consider themselves lucky and which was the easiest decision for a match official to make.


Middlesbrough penalty appeal v Bournemouth

Boro made a disastrous start after going 1-0 down in no time at the Vitality Stadium. However Gaston Ramirez tried to throw them a lifeline by throwing himself, literally, over in the box soon after. There was no contact with Simon Francis and in truth it was a late candidate for dive of the season. He was duly booked for his trouble.

Verdict: Correct decision


Gaston Ramirez red card v Bournemouth

The Uruguayan barley lasted 20 minutes on the south coast and his calamitous cameo ended as not long after he was booked for diving he was given his marching orders for a late lunge on Marc Pugh in the corner. He doesn’t make much contact but it’s a stupid, wild challenge. Madness.

Verdict: Correct decision


Oumar Niasse red card v Watford

Big call this from Bobby Madley and on reflection he’s got it wrong.

Niasse went in for a loose ball with M’Baye Niang and seemed to catch the Watford man on the shin. The ref, who was well placed, wasted no time at all in sending off the Hull man.

Truth be known there was very little contact and one can only presume he’s been penalised for a high foot. A foul in all probability but a straight red? Not so much. Niasse’ face after seeing red tells its own story.

Verdict: Incorrect decision


Stoke City penalty v Swansea City

It was a bad day all round for Stoke who endured an afternoon to forget at the Liberty Stadium.

However things might have improved had Marko Arnautovic not blazed over from the spot to level things up against Swansea. The home side were not happy about the penalty award but in fairness Federico Fernandez did seem to impede Xherdan Shaqiri and take him out from behind after he was through on goal.

It was clumsy rather then malicious, but still a penno.

Verdict: Correct decision


Chelsea penalty v Tottenham

An incredible game between two London behemoths at Wembley and a major talking point was Martin Atkinson’s decision to award the Blues a spot-kick with the game in the balance at 1-1.

Victor Moses went over in the area after a ridiculous sliding challenge from Son. There were plenty on social media claiming Moses made the most of it, and he almost certainly did, but if you are going to steam in and slide in such a ridiculous manner in the area you are just asking for bother. “The penalty for me was a soft penalty or was not a penalty,” said Mauricio Pochettinho afterwards. But then he would say that wouldn’t he.

Verdict: Correct decision


Manchester United penalty appeal v Burnley

The returning Wayne Rooney was incensed after Anthony Taylor failed to award a spot-kick after he was sent flying in the box by Joey Barton on the half hour. Barton got none of the ball, but plenty of Rooney’s shin. We’ve seen them given.

Verdict: Incorrect decision


Wayne Rooney goal v Watford

Wayne Rooney: On target against Burnley

A number of Manchester United fans let out a collective groan on social media upon discovering Rooney had been selected ahead of Marcus Rashford at Turf Moor. But Wazza responded by putting in a lively first half shift and scoring the goal to put the Red Devils 2-0 up.

His scuffed effort literally crept over the line and for a split second there was confusion as to whether the ball had actually crossed. Anthony Taylor was in no doubt though and immediately blew for a goal, number 251 for Rooney in a Reds shirt. Not a collectors item but they all count.

Verdict: Correct decision

Manchester City penalty appeal v Arsenal


All eyes on Craig Pawson who said no dice when Sergio Aguero took a first half tumble in the area with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain for company. It was a solid call too as The Ox made no attempt to play the ball and Aguero seemed to catch his own heel if anything.

Verdict: Correct decision


Manchester City disallowed goal v Arsenal

City absolutely dominated possession in the first half against Arsenal and finally thought they’d made the breakthrough after Leroy Sane whipped the ball in from the byeline that Sergio Aguero fired goalwards. Petr Cech stopped his effort on the line but Raheem Sterling was on hand to bury the loose ball into the roof of the net. The linesman Steve Child flagged though claiming Sane’s cross went out of play before coming back in. It was mighty close but super slow-mo replays suggested that some of the ball was still in play. Ergo, the goal should have stood.

Verdict: Incorrect decision


Team most likely to feel brassed off award

Rob Holding: Stood out in win over Man City

Manchester City

The Citizens dominated against Arsenal for long spells but it is the Gunners who will contest their third FA Cup final in four years after a 2-1 win in extra-time. It could have all been so different however if Sterling’s ‘goal’ had not been chalked off. It was a tight call but the general consensus afterwards was that the ball didn’t fully go out of play.


Stonewall decision of the week

Gaston Ramirez’s first yellow card v Bournemouth

It was an atrocious dive from Ramirez to try and manufacture Boro a penalty. He was literally two or three metres past the Bournemouth player when he decided to go down. It was theatrical, ridiculous and definitely worthy of a caution.

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Stoke City – 24 Apr 11:45

Power Rankings: Man United stay put; Palace hit top six

Crystal Palace surged into sixth place in our Power Rankings with another impressive away-day showing against Liverpool, while Man Utd failed to make up ground despite another win.

After winning at Chelsea and sinking Arsenal at home Sam Allardyce’s men are flying and although they may be 12th in the real table, we rate them a lot higher after Christian Benteke’s double stunned Jurgen Klopp’s men.

In fact we rate Palace considerably better than a mid-table outfit and have them in the top six in our rankings.

Elsewhere, Manchester United grabbed a win, but failed to make up any ground, while Hull leapt into 14th spot after their brilliant home win with 10 men.


In Power Rankings, we award points from 0.5 to 7, decided by an algorithm based on bookmaker odds and winning margins.

It rewards teams scoring lots of goals and also those defying expectations but sees odds-on favourites penalised for sneaking past inferior opponents by the odd goal.

West Ham, who are 13th this time around, claimed the title by 3.5 points in our inaugural Power Rankings last season.

Matchday 34

Bournemouth – 5pts: Hammered a shambolic Boro outfit.

C Palace – 4pts: Tactical masterclass, according to Palace boss Sam Allardyce

Swansea – 4pts: Slightly fortunate, but making a fight of it.

Man Utd – 3pts: Clinical away performance.

Hull City – 3pts: Won despite giving up possession and having a man sent off.

West Ham – 1.5pts: Shut-out Everton in arguably the worst game of the season.

Everton – 1pt: Could not break West Ham’s resilient backline.


Power Rankings

Team Power Rankings Points Official Points
1. Tottenham 78.75 71
2. Chelsea 70.25 75
 3. Everton 69.5 58
 4. Liverpool 68.25 66
5. Man City 58.25 64
6. Crystal Palace 53.5 38
7. Man Utd 52.75 63
8. West Brom 51.5 44
9. Bournemouth 49.5 38
10. Arsenal 49 57
11. Watford 46 40
12. Southampton 44.5 40
13. West Ham 43.5 38
14. Hull 43  33
15. Burnley 42.5 38
16. Leicester 41.5  37
= Stoke 41.5 39
18. Swansea 40.5  31
19. Sunderland  30.5  21
20. Middlesbrough 27.5  24

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Stoke City – 24 Apr 07:43

Kante and Alli scoop top PFA awards; Beckham honoured

Chelsea midfielder N’Golo Kante has been voted the Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the Year for the 2016-17 season.

The Frenchman, who is on course to win a second successive Premier League title after also being part of the Leicester side which upset the odds last season, secured the most votes from his fellow players.

He saw off competition from Chelsea team-mate Eden Hazard – who won the award in 2015 – plus Tottenham’s Harry Kane, Everton striker Romelu Lukaku, Zlatan Ibrahimovic of Manchester United and Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez.

Kante was presented with the award at the Grosvenor Hotel in London on Sunday evening.

Tottenham midfielder Dele Alli won the Young Player prize for the second successive season, Manchester City’s Lucy Bronze won the women’s Player of the Year award for the second time having also won it in 2014, and Birmingham’s Jess Carter topped the voting in the women’s Young Player category.

Former England captain David Beckham received the PFA’s Merit award for his contribution to the game.

Kante has played a key role in Chelsea’s surge to the top of the league this season and is renowned as a tireless box-to-box competitor who helps break up opposition attacks and initiate them for his own side.

He is set to become the first player to achieve the distinction of winning successive Premier League titles with different clubs if Chelsea can hold off Tottenham in this season’s championship race.

Kante said: “To be chosen by the players to be player of the year means a lot to me.

“It means the world to be chosen and it’s been two beautiful seasons, one with Leicester, and we are in good form with Chelsea. To be player of the year, it’s a great honour.”

On his move from Leicester to Stamford Bridge, Kante continued: “It’s a different type of playing, but with the manager, with the players, everything is easy, because we work a lot to be good in the games. It’s working very well.”

Asked about the influence of boss Antonio Conte, the former Boulogne and Caen player said: “He knows what he wants from the players.

“He wants to win, and we work very, very, very hard in training for him. He put a winning mentality into the squad, and everyone wants to give their best for the team, and to make Chelsea win titles.”

The Blues are four points clear at the top of the Premier League and Paris-born Kante added: “We have to fight for six more games.

“We’re going to fight like a final for every game, and hopefully we can win the league at the end of the season.”

Chelsea will also face Arsenal in the FA Cup final at Wembley on May 27 and, on talk of a double, he said: “We’re going to fight for both competitions.

“The cup is just one game, and the league six games, and we’re going to give our best to win these two competitions.”

Alli’s young player prize is some consolation for his controversial omission from the six-man shortlist for the senior award.

The England midfielder, 21, has again been critical to Spurs’ title push and heading into the weekend was the highest-scoring player in the league not recognised as a forward, with 16 goals.

England full-back Bronze won the women’s player of the year award for the second time, after being part of the Manchester City squad which won the Women’s Super League without losing a single game in 2016.

Birmingham midfielder Carter saw off competition from three Manchester City players to win the women’s young player of the year award.

Beckham, who won 115 England caps and starred at club level for Manchester United, followed former Red Devils team-mate Ryan Giggs in winning the Merit prize. He also received the prize alongside his ‘Class of 92’ United team-mates in 2013.

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Latest Stories, Video, and Commentary about Stoke City | BBC 23 Apr 19:30

Lawro's predictions v Jermaine Jenas and Trevor Nelson

BBC football expert Mark Lawrenson takes on Jermaine Jenas and Trevor Nelson in this week's Premier League predictions.

Stoke City – 23 Apr 13:58

Arnautovic reveals he rejected move to Everton to stay at Stoke

Stoke City star Marko Arnautovic has claimed he rejected interest from Everton after conversations with both Ronald Koeman and Romelu Lukaku.

The Blues made a move for the Austrian last summer, who has seven goals and four assists in all competitions this season, with him reportedly being available for purchase at £12.5million.

However, Arnautovic has revealed that he felt he owed it to Stoke to sign a new deal after the faith they have put in him.

“Ronald Koeman tried to persuade me to move to Everton. Romelu Lukaku also phoned me to ask if I would join them, and I found that a great honour,” Arnautovic told SportMagazin in Austria.

“But nonetheless I rang Mark Hughes and told him: ‘Get the paperwork ready – I’ll extend my stay with Stoke.’

“They had put a lot of faith in me, and rescued me from Germany.  Werder Bremen was a bad place for me, and I had to leave them.

“Stoke took me on, and my career took off with them.  I thought to myself – it’s a place where everything suits me, so why not stay put?

“Stoke wanted to make me their best-paid player.  Talks took place, and in the end everyone was happy.

“Okay, I don’t know how satisfied Stoke were – but I certainly was!”

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ESPN FC - Stoke City News 23 Apr 12:44

Alarm bells ring for Mark Hughes as shambolic Stoke lose at Swansea

Mark Hughes gave his verdict after Stoke lost at Swansea. Given the opposition, Stoke arguably put in their worst performance of the season in the 2-0 away loss to Swansea on Saturday; a result that heaps even more pressure on under-fire manager Mark Hughes. The Swans hadn't won in six games, yet it was the Potters who looked like they were on the brink of relegation. The opening goal was another for the season's gag reel of set-piece defending with Swansea's leading scorer of headed goals, Fernando Llorente, left entirely unopposed to nod home. A rare...

ESPN FC - Stoke City News 23 Apr 02:49

Hughes, Stoke City rue missed penalty

Mark Hughes looks back on Stoke City's missed penalty that could have turned the tide against Swansea.

ESPN FC - Stoke City News 22 Apr 21:00

Swansea 2-0 Stoke: Llorente, Carroll power Swans

Swansea City secured a vital 2-0 win over Stoke as their push for Premier League survival continues.

Latest Stories, Video, and Commentary about Stoke City | BBC 22 Apr 18:54

Swansea City 2-0 Stoke City

Swansea City revive their Premier League survival hopes as they beat Stoke to end a six-match winless run.

ESPN FC - Stoke City News 22 Apr 18:04

Fernando Llorente and Tom Carroll boost Swansea's survival hopes

Swansea City Stoke City 2 0 FT Game Details Live football odds with bet365. Bet Now » Highlights GameCast Lineups and Stats Swansea City secured a vital 2-0 win over Stoke as their push for Premier League survival continues. Swansea City secured a vital 2-0 win over Stoke as their push for Premier League survival continues. Fernando Llorente is proud of his side's important winning effort following their lowly performance last match. Swansea stopped the rot with a 2-0 victory over Stoke but remain in the bottom three of the Premier League. Fernando Llorente's early header and a deflected Tom Carroll second-half strike gave Swansea their first win in seven games and lifted some of the gloom around the Liberty Stadium. Swansea were given a huge helping hand when, with the score at 1-0, Marko Arnautovic blazed his 69th-mnute penalty high over the crossbar and into the disbelieving Stoke supporters behind the goal. But Hull remain...

ESPN FC - Stoke City News 22 Apr 17:58

Swansea 2-0 Stoke: Llorente, Carroll power Swans

Swansea City secured a vital 2-0 win over Stoke as their push for Premier League survival continues.

Stoke City – 22 Apr 15:07

Swansea breathe new life into relegation fight

Fernando Llorente ended a four games without scoring as he breathed new life into Swansea’s relegation fight as Stoke were beaten 2-0 on Saturday.


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Latest Stories, Video, and Commentary about Stoke City | BBC 18 Apr 19:43

Johnson signs new Stoke contract

Stoke City defender Glen Johnson signs a one-year contract extension that will keep him at the club until the summer of 2018.

Latest Stories, Video, and Commentary about Stoke City | BBC 15 Apr 20:22

Lawro's predictions v Sting and his son

BBC football expert Mark Lawrenson takes on Newcastle fan Sting and his son Joe Sumner in this week's Premier League predictions.

Latest Stories, Video, and Commentary about Stoke City | BBC 15 Apr 19:20

Stoke City 3-1 Hull City

Xherdan Shaqiri's superb strike seals a first league win in six games for Stoke City as Mark Hughes' men prove too strong for Hull.

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