Ever since their promotion to the Premier League in 2008 Stoke City have never been a team other fans wish to do well.
Whether it be their 0-0 draws, their rugby-esque style of football or the fact that they manage to do in a lot of people’s coupons at the weekend, the Potters aren’t amongst the favourites of the Premier League.
Here at Talking Baws, we look at the reasons why nobody likes Stoke.
By Phelim Warren – @freewheeler12
1. Primitive Football
Though Tony Pulis has departed, his caveman style of football remains for the most part. Mark Hughes has brought his Blackburn Rovers brand of biff, bang wallop to the Britannia Stadium and they remain singularly awful on the eye. When Hughes departs, it wouldn’t surprise me to see Egil Olsen make a comeback.
2. Their Class-less Fans
Not them all I hasten to add, but the section that continues to bate Aaron Ramsey of Arsenal ever since Ramsey’s leg was broken a few years back in a clash with Ryan Shawcross. Personally I don’t believe Shawcross went to “do” Ramsey, but the booing of Ramsey since then is contemptible beyond belief.
3. Charlie Adam
Despite his cultured left peg, his sneaky/cowardly fouls have left several players in a heap. Some call Adam a “hard man” as a result of his bad challenges. He’s not. He wouldn’t last two minutes in the company of Chopper Harris, Tommy Smith, Dave Mackay or Norman Hunter, hard men who could actually play as well.
4. Stephen Ireland
Trying (again) to worm his way back into an Irish squad following his controversial and well documented premature return from an international double-header in 2007 when he claimed his grandmother had passed. When she rang the media to claim otherwise, Ireland stated it was another gran, but she too was still with us. Has said and done too much since to merit a call up, trying to rebuild a career with Stoke will hardly help his cause, despite Roy Keane’s recent conversation with one of the aforementioned living grannies.
In my opinion, one of the most over-rated managers in modern football. His brand of football is consistently drab, borderline dirty and despite being poorly treated in the appointment of Mancini to succeed him at Man City, his teams rarely if ever are worth watching live. Stoke and him are well suited.
6. Jermaine Pennant
Rivals and probably exceeds Stephen Ireland for messing things up off the park. So much natural ability that millions would give to have. Where did it all go wrong? A lot of it at Stoke it seems, and having broken club curfews more than once he was released in January.
7. Irish Players
As an avid follower of the Irish national team, I find it impossible to root for Stoke despite Ireland regulars Marc Wilson, Jonathan Walters and Glen Whelan also playing regularly for Stoke. I admire them individually but “of Stoke City” gets me every time.