Posted on September 30, 2013
Stoke city managed to progress into the next round of the Capital One cup after beating Tranmere Rovers in the third round of the competition.
Despite this tough away fixture, Stoke managed to come out with a 2-0 victory. This led to the praise from manager Mark Hughes, who was also especially happy with the performance from midfielder Stephen Ireland. The Republic of Ireland midfielder was brought to the club only recently on a loan deal from Aston Villa. Since he is out of contract at the end of the season, it is widely expected that Stoke will sign him on a permanent basis.
Coming on the back of two tough matches against Manchester city and Arsenal, Stoke were looking to regain their confidence with the victory. They could only manage a 0-0 draw with city, while suffering a 3-1 defeat against Arsenal during the weekend. Stoke have been trying to change the style of football under Hughes, who was appointed in the summer as the replacement for Tony Pulis. This paid off with brilliant results against Tranmere Rovers, as the club were excellent in all departments. This led to the manager even saying that Stoke can win this competition this season.
In the last few years, less favoured teams have won this competition because the big clubs do not care about it anymore.
“It is a good competition for me – it has been as a player and I’ve done okay as a manager, getting to a couple of semi-finals. It would be nice this year to go one step further if we can, and it is certainly within our capabilities. A lot of Premier League sides are playing each other in this round, so that will take a number of teams out of the equation,” said Hughes after the match.