Stoke City v Cardiff City: Michael O’Neill and Neil Harris pick their teams



Manager Michael O’Neill was trying to balance consistency of selection with wanting to shake his players up after three defeats in four.

And his Stoke City line up against Cardiff City here at the bet365 this afternoon shows NO changes after he decided to give last week’s 11 another go.

That means no change in goal and no change at centre half where Danny Batth and James Chester are the main men once again for a fourth successive game.

One theory doing the rounds was a change at centre half to free up Chester to play at right back, but O’Neill has swerved that one by re-naming Tommy Smith and Bruno Martins Indi at right and left back respectively.

As for elsewhere, Tyrese Campbell says up front and has not been shifted wide to accommodate the physical presence of Sam Vokes in attack.

And that means a second successive start for young Northern Ireland international Jordan Thompson following his introduction at QPR seven days ago.

Stoke go into this game desperate for points after back-to-back losses and three defeats in the last four to cut their cushion to the bottom three to just the three points.

There is just one change on the bench with Josh Tymon coming in for Julien Ngoy.

Cardiff have been hit by a potentially huge pre-match blow, it has emerged, with playmaker Lee Tomlin being ruled out with a knee injury.

Stoke: Butland, Smith, Martins Indi, Batth, Chester, Allen, Clucas, Ince, Powell, Thompson, Campbell.

Subs: Davies, Vokes, Gregory, Oakley-Boothe, Cousins, Tymon, Collins.





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