Five Players Who Could Leave This Summer
There’s been far too much optimism around these parts as of late, so I thought it was time to poke my head above ground once again. With summer fast approaching there are no doubt going to be countless blogs looking at specific or groups of players who might be joining the Mighty Potters in the coming transfer window. However to continue the pessimism I thought I’d take a look at the opposite end of the spectrum and look at who might be leaving the family come July 1st.
God bless this man, I love him, I really do. But the former England international simply hasn’t been the same this season. Peter would be the first to admit that pace isn’t a part of his game, which is why he can still do a similar job today at the ripe age of 34, as he could when he first joined us. However our style of play has changed dramatically since then, and I believe that his flourishing partnership with Bojan last season was his last decent run for the side. After finding it nearly impossible to break into the first team this season, despite Hughes clearly not having any confidence in any one of his strikers over the others.
Crouch’s inability to play as the mobile and flexible forward, combined with his clear frustration at lack of game time makes him an easy choice to be leaving in the summer. Possibly as one of our first deals.
Much like Crouch, Charlie Adam has found it difficult to secure a regular first team place over the course of the season. This isn’t entirely his fault as given a run in the side I have no doubt that he would play at the same levels he has done over the past two years. However the form of Afellay, Cameron, Whelan and the recent introduction of Imbula has forced Adam way down the pecking order. His case also hasn’t been helped by a couple of injuries over the course of the year.
I expect to see Adam go to either a newly promoted Premier League team, or a team in the Championship who have hopes of gaining promotion and are looking for someone with premier league experience to reinforce their midfield. I’d look at Birmingham, Middlesborough and West Brom as likely destinations.
This is where this blog starts to hurt. In my mind Marko is already gone, if he had any plans of staying then he would have signed a contract by now. Do I blame him for wanting to move on? Slightly. I understand the lure of European football, more money and a bigger image. However Stoke took a chance on a floundering Marko when we signed him and this club has helped to mould him into the beast on the wing that he has become.
I’ve heard some small things about him being linked with a move to Italy, and quite frankly I’d rather see him go abroad than remain in the Premier League. However I wouldn’t place too much stock in those rumours quite yet.
I’m sure that Hughes will have replacements in mind, and if some of the names being thrown around are true and Hughes and Mark Cartwright have the ability to pull them off, then we hopefully won’t miss Marko too much.
Not someone I would have expected to take this list until a few days ago. After being linked with a move back to Germany you have to start thinking that there’s no smoke without fire, particularly when it comes to such an out of left field rumour.
There’s no doubt that Wolly’s performances over the season have earned him a move to a bigger club in the summer. For me it would be a transfer that would really hurt, he’s been a consistent rock for us in defence, however there’s a large section (And vocal) portion of Stoke fans who just don’t seem to like him, no matter what he does for the club.
I hope that the locker room here is what convinces him to stay, as he seems to get along quite well with other players, despite the on pitch arguments. If he does leave expect it to be to Germany, I highly doubt he’d leave us for another Premier League club.
And to round out our top 3 players of the season being linked with moves away, we have Jack Butland who has been heavily linked with a move to Chelsea. This is an interesting one for me because there is no way that Begovic remains at Chelsea if Butland goes there and takes the No. 1 spot, and there is no way that Butland goes to Chelsea unless he is given that assurance. So, despite the links to Everton, I find it likely that if Butland was to go to Chelsea we would see Begovic make his (less than) triumphant return to the Britannia as part of a cash and player deal that sees Butland going the other way.
Butland knows that Stoke has been very kind to his career though and he might see the sense to remain with us for one more season. Even is he does leave however don’t expect it to be done until later in the window, as Jack’s ankle will have to fully heal before he can complete any medical with any other club.
So there we have it, 5 players who could leave our precious club this Summer. Hopefully I’m wrong and Hughes can convince some of these players to stay, however even if they do leave I would expect high quality to be coming through the door to replace them.
Written by Mitch Adams
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