One single transfer question that will stump most Liverpool and Stoke City fans


How long have we got until football returns?

Probably still not long enough for most Stoke City and Liverpool supporters to come up with the answer to this test of memory.

Here is a pub quiz question to occupy your evening – you can cheat below to find out the answer.

Which Stoke City player was knocked out of the League Cup by Liverpool in 1994 – and then on the bench for Liverpool in the next round?

There are a couple of reasons why this is tricky.

You would think that most Stoke fans would easily remember every player who made the glamorous switch to Anfield in recent times.

Just Xherdan Shaqiri, right? But he was a three-year-old in Switzerland that time when Stoke were being knocked out of the cup in Merseyside.

And of the star men in that Stoke squad, where Lou Macari had just taken over from Joe Jordan, Larus Sigurdsson, Toddy Orlygsson, Nigel Gleghorn, Lee Sandford, Paul Peschisolido, John Butler… they didn’t have a stint at Liverpool.

Also, and here’s your first clue, Liverpool were working through a series of players in a certain position in each round of the competition that season under Roy Evans.

Four sub keepers as deputy to David James, ending up with Alec Chamberlain in the final, which they won against Bolton Wanderers. There was Tony Warner in the semi-final, Michael Stensgaard in the quarter-final and…

That’s right, well done to all who got there before now: Mark Prudhoe.

Prudhoe had joined Stoke from Darlington in 1993 and had battled with Carl Muggleton, Gordon Marshall and Ronnie Sinclair for the number one jersey before he got his surprise move to Liverpool for two months from late November 1994.

In all, he played 470 league and cup games in his career and was employed by 16 different clubs – and he did head back to the Victoria Ground to help Stoke challenge for a place in the Premier League in 1995/96.

He later smiled: “I hated playing in the reserves, so I’d go out on loan wherever I was wanted.”

Prudhoe’s time at Stoke is best remembered for a stunning save against Leicester in November 1993, keeping out an effort from Steve Walsh in a televised game.

Co-commentator David Pleat said: “We have just seen an incredible save. There was goal written all over that effort.

“Just watch that save from Prudhoe! Really tremendous. My word! That’s going to rank as one of the best ever!”

Mark Prudhoe played for Stoke through the mid-1990s after joining from Darlington.

But it was Leicester, too, who beat Stoke in the play-offs to deny Prudhoe and Co a chance of reaching the top flight.

And he did it all while he was out of contract.

“The Victoria Ground was fantastic, I had a great time,” he said a few years later. “We reached the old Second Division play-offs where we lost to Leicester 1-0 over two legs.

“I played 48 consecutive games for Stoke while I was out of contract. Imagine that today. There was no Bosman rule then and players had to just get on with it. I wanted a rise and they wouldn’t give me one.

“Preston actually offered Stoke £100,000 during the dispute but they wouldn’t take it.”

Prudhoe carried on a nomadic career after hanging up his gloves, becoming a freelance goalkeeping coach.

These days, he’s Academy keeper coach at Sunderland.

For the record, Stoke lost 2-1 to Liverpool in October 1994 with Carl Muggleton in goal (Ian Rush scored both) and Liverpool beat Blackburn 3-1 in November 1994 with Mark Prudhoe on the bench (Ian Rush scored all three).





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