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Stoke pour scorn on Adam link ahead of Crystal Palace clash

| 18.01.2014

Stoke boss Mark Hughes will be hoping new loan capture John Guidetti can work wonders in his side’s ailing front-line, after the Manchester City forward signed on at the Britannia until the end of the season.   

None of the other four strikers currently plying their trade at the Potteries club have managed to breach the five-goal mark in the Premier League this term and midfielder Charlie Adam is Stoke’s top scorer in the division so far with exactly that tally.

It is, therefore, hardly surprising that Hughes reacted with nonchalance when asked about reports that fellow former City boss Roberto Mancini fancied the Scot at Galatasary.

The Welshman insisted he had no idea where the rumour came from and clearly wants it to go away, as Adam’s goals have been one of the few things he’s been able to rely on since taking over from Tony Pulis at Stoke over the summer.

Adam is 10/3 to score for the third game in a row at Crystal Palace, following his efforts in the 5-3 loss at Liverpool last time out and in the 2-1 FA Cup win against Leicester.

However, Stoke have a truly dreadful away record this term, with their only top-flight win in the division coming against West Ham back in August.

No Premier League team has secured less points on the road than the Potters in 2013/14 and they face old boss Pulis’ new charges Palace, who are in even better form than their recent stats suggest, next at Selhurst Park.

The Eagles have trebled their win tally in all competitions this term since the baseball cap-sporting long-ball merchant took over in November and pushed 19/20 title-favourites City closer at the Etihad than any team has in the league this season, going down to a single Edin Dzeko goal over Christmas.

If Jason Puncheon had kept his head from the spot in the eighth-minute of their last match, Palace could have been coming into this fixture on the back of a famous result at Spurs, so the 11/8 on offer about them making it 10 points from their last available 15 at home looks a terrific price against Stoke.

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Alex Fortune