Thursday, August 11, 2022

Stoke City Transfer Window Review: Has Hughes Managed To Improve The First-Team?

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Snehanjan Banerjee
Snehanjan used to a former columnist at The 4th Official. Fan of KK, Cricket and Liverpool (in no particular order).

For the last three seasons, Stoke City had been finishing third on the table on the bounce. Probably in the first two seasons, that could have been seen as a positive but failure to improve their League finish last term was a setback for Mark Hughes. The Welsh manager had managed to improve the gameplay of the Potters since he took charge of the club but the Potters have still missed out on a Europa League qualification despite coming so close.

This transfer window was a big opportunity for the Potters to bolster their squad in order to finally make it to the top-six. Did Mark Hughes make the right use of the transfer window or the Potters stayed left behind by their rivals? Let us look at a quick review of the transfer window Stoke had.

Ins

Bruno Martins Indi – Porto, loan

Joe Allen – Liverpool, £13m

Ramadan Sobhi – Al Ahly, £5m

Ryan Sweeney – AFC Wimbledon, undisclosed

Lee Grant – Derby, loan

Wilfried Bony – Man City, loan

Cameron McJannett – Luton, undisclosed

Fees quoted from Sky Sports

Stoke City's Welsh midfielder Joe Allen (L) vies with Manchester City's Belgian midfielder Kevin De Bruyne during the English Premier League football match between Stoke City and Manchester City at the Bet365 Stadium in Stoke-on-Trent, central England on August 20, 2016. / AFP / Lindsey PARNABY / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. / (Photo credit should read LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP/Getty Images)
Stoke City’s Welsh midfielder Joe Allen (L) vies with Manchester City’s Belgian midfielder Kevin De Bruyne during the English Premier League football match between Stoke City and Manchester City at the Bet365 Stadium in Stoke-on-Trent, central England on August 20, 2016. / AFP / Lindsey PARNABY / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. / (Photo credit should read LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP/Getty Images)

Outs

Philipp Wollscheid – Wolfsburg, undisclosed

Peter Odemwingie – released

Steve Sidwell – Brighton, free

Mark Waddington – Kilmarnock, loan

Ben Barber – York City, free

George Waring – Shrewsbury, loan

Moha El Ouriachi – Shrewsbury, loan

Marc Wilson – Bournemouth, £2m

Philipp Wollschied – Wolfsburg, loan

Joselu Mato – Deportivo, loan

Fees quoted from Sky Sports

STOKE ON TRENT, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 19: Marc Wilson of Stoke City celebrates his team's second goall by Jonathan Walters (not pictured) during the Barclays Premier League match between Stoke City and Leicester City at Britannia Stadium on September 19, 2015 in Stoke on Trent, United Kingdom. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)
STOKE ON TRENT, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 19: Marc Wilson of Stoke City celebrates his team’s second goall by Jonathan Walters (not pictured) during the Barclays Premier League match between Stoke City and Leicester City at Britannia Stadium on September 19, 2015 in Stoke on Trent, United Kingdom. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

What Stoke managed to bring in

With Joe Allen, Stoke City’s midfield looks much more creative, much lively than it was before. The Welshman had a fantastic Euro campaign and was included in the Team of the Tournament. Adding a player of his caliber for just £13m represents a stunning deal from the Potters. Ramadan Sobhi, an Egyptian international, is another solid addition to the squad with his enormous potential.

Stoke had to deal with defensive problems last season and Martins Indi, with his international experience, can potentially fix those. Stoke City made two deadline day signings, both on loan. Indi was a vastly important addition but Wilfred Bony, on loan from Manchester City, gives them a whole new edge and dimension in the attack.

Stoke also managed to retain in-demand star Marko Arnautovic at the club even after plenty of speculations and that feels nothing less than a new signing. Overall, it was a good window for Stoke City.

What could still worry the fans

Stoke improved their defence, midfield and attack this summer. However, they could have gone for another central midfielder and possibly another forward given that Bony has been out of form for a long time. It’s still unclear if he’ll have the same impact that he had at Swansea considering his recent spell.

Remarks

We would Stoke City seven out of ten for the business they have done this summer.

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