The Stoke View
Ahead of what is the penultimate game of a long and testing season for the Eagles, TEB had a chat with the Wizards Of Drivel to find out about their season so far and thoughts on the match.
Q. Let us kick off with your views on our meeting earlier in the season when Palace ran out winners at Selhurst.
We ballsed that one up. To be honest, I can’t remember too much about it other than the fact we probably should have come away with at least a point. Selhurst Park has never been a good ground for us.
Q. How has the season gone for Stoke since that game?
Terribly. We were already pretty poor before that game, though. We started poorly, got worse, and barely threatened medicore all season.
Q. Did the club do the business required in the January transfer window?
Not quite. We got the much needed additions of Badou N’Diaye and Moritz Bauer, but we seriously needed firepower and didn’t sign a striker.
Q. Was it the right decision to sack Mark Hughes when you did or should it have happened earlier? Is it a little odd to see one of your relegation rivals appoint him?
Should have happened a lot, lot earlier. He had completely run out of ideas and lost the dressing room. Southampton were after literally anyone who could provide an immediate boost, so I don’t blame them going for a former player, but I really hope they go down.
Q. What have the fans made of Paul Lambert since he was appointed as Hughes’ replacement?
Mixed. It’s generally acknowledged that he’s made us harder to beat and he inherited a terrible squad. However, one win in twelve games is poor whatever way you look at it, and his tactics don’t scream ‘attack minded’.
Q. Who would be your choice for player of the season for your club and for the Premier League as a whole?
For us, Xherdan Shaqiri. I think Joe Allen would be the fans’ choice but Shaqiri has stopped us doing a Derby. As for the Premier League, Mo Salah.
Q. Explain in no more than 140 characters how the last ten years have been for the club.
The first few years of Pulis’ and Hughes’ Premier League stints were magnificent, but both ended sourly. Now heading towards a relegation we all saw coming.
Q. What have you made of Palace this season?
Part of the huge pack of mediocrity below seventh place, but got enough about you to stay up because of a decent manager and Wilfried Zaha.
Q. Name a player from EACH side that the opposition should be concerned about?
Palace – Wilfried Zaha. Stoke – Xherdan Shaqiri
Q. Your prediction?
Stoke 1 Palace 0. The fact we have to win and you don’t might edge it in our favour.
Q. And finally, tell us a little about your fan group and any projects that you may be working on.
The Wizards of Drivel is a weekly Stoke podcast taking a look at all things Stoke, so if you fancy listening to a lot of miserable Stokies you can find all our links on Twitter – @wizardsofdrivel. The team behind the pod also have another pod ‘Who Are Ya?’, which is an absolutely fantastic podcast – a monthly documentary about a different football club every month. Professionally made and told through the voices of fans all around the world, we’re really, really proud of it and it’s been nominated for a British Podcast Award.