Marko Arnautovic and Peter Crouch on the scoresheet as Harry Maguire brought the away side level
HULL CITY’S dismal away form continued as Xherdan Shaqiri’s wonder goal helped Stoke to a deserving victory at the Bet365 stadium.
The Swiss star picked up the ball from over 25-yards out and unleashed a screamer into the top corner to seal all three points with 10 minutes left on the clock.
Marko Arnautovic and Peter Crouch were also on the scoresheet for the Potters as Harry Maguire levelled the scores six minutes into the second half.
But Hull have not won an away match since last August as they remain just two points above the bottom three.
Arnautovic gave relegation-threatened Hull the worst possible start when he latched onto Shaqiri’s through ball before brilliantly beating keeper Eldin Jakupovic with a fierce strike.
Saido Berahino then thought he had his first goal in Stoke colours but his strike was correctly ruled out for offside.
The visitors fought their way back into the game and their best chance of the first half fell to Grosicki who opted to pass the ball to the unsuspecting Oumar Niasse when he should have shot.
But Marco Silva’s men didn’t have to wait long until they were level when Harry Maguire took full advantage of some slack Stoke defending.
After Erik Pieters gave away a needless corner, the ball eventually found its way into the box and fell kindly to the defender who grabbed his second in two matches.
But a terrific Jon Walters cross was met by Crouch to head home before Shaqiri released a thunderbolt from over 25 yards to seal all three points.
FACTS, STATS, GOALS & LOLS
- Stoke lost their four previous Premier League games to sit on fringes of relegation battle.
- City fans were singing ‘Harry For England’ in praise of their emerging young defender Harry Maguire who has shone in a difficult season for the club.
- And he popped up five minutes into the second half to score his second Premier League goal in as many games with a scruffy shot from a corner to equalise.
- They are his first two in the top flight for City and could prove decisive in the relegation shake up at the end of the season.
- Marko Arnautovic had put Stoke ahead after only six minutes when the home side dominated.
- Stoke midfielder Charlie Adam furious at being substituted in 58th minute and boots a chair in the home dugout having been ignored by boss Mark Hughes as he came off.
- Second Stoke sub Jon Walters’ first touch is a low header bringing a superb save out of Hull keeper Eldin Jakupovic.
- Stoke keeper Lee Grant and defender Eric Pieters in stand up row over the left wing back’s awful clearance. Grant shoves Pieters at one point during the finger jabbing ruck.
PREMIER LEAGUE TABLE
Next five fixtures
Apr 22 – Swansea (A) – Prem
Apr 29 – West Ham (H) – Prem
May 6 – Bournemouth (A) – Prem
May 13 – Arsenal (H) – Prem
May 21 – Saints (A) – Prem
Apr 22 – Watford (H) – Prem
Apr 29 – Saints (A) – Prem
May 6 – Sunderland (H) – Prem
May 14 – Palace (A) – Prem
May 21 – Spurs (H) – Prem
WHAT THEY SAID
Stoke boss Mark Hughes: “It was a big three points. An important three points. We’ve come through a period that was arguably our most testing of the season in terms of fixtures.
“For the most part this season we’ve picked up points against the teams below us and that’s what we’ve done today.
“Shaqiri’s goal was the icing on the cake.”
Hull boss Marco Silva: “I’m not happy with our performance in general. We need to do more. We need to improve. At this level we need to start strong and play 90 minutes, not 80 minutes.
“Our team only played 80 minutes because the first 10 we didn’t play. We can’t start the game like we started.
“Only our team can change the situation. Five more games, the next game is a chance for more points.”
DREAM TEAM RATINGS
Stoke: Grant 6, Johnson 7, Shawcross 6, Martins Indi 6, Pieters 6, Muniesa 6, Cameron 7, Adam 6 (Walters 58, 7) Shaqiri 8 (Diouf 88, 5) Arnautovic 7, Berahino 6 (Crouch 58, 7)
Subs not used: Butland, Bardsley, Imbula, Sobhi
Goals: Arnautovic (6) Crouch (66) Shaqiri (80)
Hull: Jakupovic 5, Maguire 8, Dawson 6, Ranocchia 6, Markovic 5 (Elmohamady 86, ) N’Diaye 7, Huddlestone 6 (Hernandez 70, 5) Grosicki 6, Robertson 6, Clucas 6, Niasse 5 (Mbokani 86, 6)
Subs not used: Marshall, Evandro, Henriksen, Maloney
Goals: Maguire (51)
STAR MAN: HARRY MAGUIRE