It seems like a long time ago now, but back in January Stoke City won a transfer tussle for a highly-rated youngster in Alfie Doughty.
The versatile left-sided player broke through into the Charlton Athletic squad in their 2019-20 season in the Championship, playing 29 times for the Addicks and scoring twice which caught the attention of several clubs.
Doughty though stuck with Charlton at the start of the 2020-21 campaign but then suffered a hamstring tear, meaning his last match for the London club was in October – by the time January came about he was a wanted man though.
Celtic, Rangers, QPR and Bournemouth were all linked to the 21-year-old but it was the Potters who agreed a £650,000 fee with Charlton for Doughty before his contract could expire at the end of the season.
Doughty wasn’t able to get onto the pitch for Stoke after he signed as he failed to fully recover from his injury in time for the end of the season, but he pulled the shirt on for the first time this afternoon in a pre-season friendly against Scottish side Hibernian.
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And his first appearance resulted in a first Stoke goal for Doughty – albeit in an uncompetitive game – as he netted the equaliser after Scott Allan opened the scoring in the first half for Hibs.
The game ended 1-1 but the result wasn’t important – Stoke fans were excited to see Doughty finally see some game-time and he could be a big player for them next season.
Great to see Alfie fit enough to play, and sharp enough to put one away. Good news. https://t.co/BwQ26W80Ri
— Stokie'73 🔴⚪️🔴⚪️ (@potter2207) July 9, 2021
He's… real? https://t.co/gYfEk0YSl4
— 👍🏻🏴 (@notstokaljona) July 9, 2021
This lads going to be ace for us https://t.co/OCSrUTmpn2
— Louis🔴⚪️ (@LouisEccleston7) July 9, 2021
— Josh🏴 (@SCFCJosh_) July 9, 2021
— Spence🏴 (@Spence_Wright24) July 9, 2021
— aiden🏴 (@scfcaiden) July 9, 2021
He’s gonna be a baller this season, you can sense it
— ScfcSeb🏴⚽️ (@ScfcSeb) July 9, 2021