Sky Sports EFL pundit David Prutton has suggested that Stoke City will be able to get back to winning ways in the Championship against struggling Hull City on Saturday.
The Potters head into the game off the back of a morale-boosting 3-1 win at Watford in the League Cup in midweek to book their place in the last 16 of the competition.
That saw Michael O’Neill’s side produce the right kind of response to their 2-1 defeat at Derby County last time out as they suffered just their second league defeat of the campaign.
Stoke still remain inside the top-six after a bright start to the season.
However, they have now won just one of their last four league matches, and that is something that they are going to need to improve over the next few weeks to stay in the play-off places.
Hull City, meanwhile, have endured a difficult start to life back in the Championship. The Tigers remain winless in the league since their impressive 4-1 win on the opening day at Preston.
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Grant McCann’s side did at least end their lengthy goal drought last time out. Lewis Keane-Potter’s goal against Sheffield United served to be just a small consolation as they fell to their fifth defeat of the campaign.
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Making his latest round of EFL predictions for Sky Sports, Prutton suggested that Stoke will be able to get their Championship form back on track by edging out Hull in a narrow 1-0 win.
He wrote: “It is just one win in four now for Stoke, although they still remain in the top six of the Championship heading into the weekend. This is the type of game they need to win if they want to stay there.
“Hull finally scored again last Saturday, but it proved to be nothing but a consolation goal against Sheffield United. There are issues for Grant McCann to deal with if they want to keep clear of the bottom three, but I can’t see them getting anything here.”
Stoke need to get back to winning ways here really in the Championship.
The expectation from their supporters will be that they will be able to secure all three points against a Hull side who have been struggling in recent weeks to both score goals and pick up points.
This game is a chance for them to build some momentum once again after they made a very strong start to the campaign.
O’Neill will look for more from some of the Potter’s most influential performers than they were able to show in a disappointing display at Derby last time out.
Hull need a result and quickly really to try and halt their alarming run of form at the moment.
They need to try and build on Lewis-Potter’s goal last time at Sheffield United because they are not offering enough in terms of final third end product to have a chance of surviving this term at the moment.
This game would be a chance for them to reinstall some belief in their chances of survival this season if they could go away to Stoke and get something.