Stoke fans weren’t happy with Mark Hughes at the close of 2017 and the first glimpse of him in 2018 hasn’t improved matters.

The Stoke boss full of excuses as usual and embarrassingly refused to give Newcastle any credit for the win, despite the visitors having half a dozen clear chances before they eventually scored the winner.

The Stoke fans weren’t letting him off the hook though, as Mark Hughes after the game challenged people to name somebody who was better qualified to manage the Potters in the second half of the season.

Interesting comments from the home supporters below, with also plenty to say about the Newcastle fans, Rafa Benitez and his team, especially Jonjo Shelvey.

Stoke fans comment via their top Oatcake message board:

‘Thought Newcastle fans rendition of “Your support is f…… s…” was highly accurate yesterday.

We didn’t turn up.

Their support on the other hand was excellent.

Extremely vocal throughout the game.

The dross being served up on the pitch week after week is having it’s inevitable effect.’

‘What is so sickening, is being beaten by a very poor Newcastle outfit.’

‘As someone said when leaving the game with me – it feels like we are the away side when we play at home.

Shelvey ran the game yet at no point did we get in his face.

Dropping off constantly and allowing the opposition possession when we are supposed to be at home.’

‘58% possession suggests the headline title of this thread is inherantly wrong.

I only saw 2nd half but I didn’t even notice he was playing.’

‘It shows that stats don’t always tell a true picture and what relevance does the possession stat have anyway?

Every single time Shelvey received the ball he was allowed almost unchallenged, to pick any pass he liked, most of which were accurate to a pin head.

It was obvious to everyone that we needed to get closer to him, other than the players or the clown of a manager.’

‘Well the stats tell you that we dominated the ball which suggests we had control of the midfield rather than shelvey.’

‘Stats eh ?

I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase lies damned lies and statistics ?

Watch the match.

Newcastle dictated the game.

Benitez had three around Crouch and two would back off to pick up the knock downs.

Shelvey played deep and spreads the play.

Darlow attacked the ball at corners as Stoke have scored more goals from corners than most other clubs.

All of these things were Benitez.

Not surprising that Hughes 1 Benitez 12 in games against each other.’

‘The game was played the way NUFC wanted it played, and that was down to Shelvey.

We may have had more of the ball, but had little idea what to do with it and the only time we threatened was when we went even longer and started throwing crosses at Crouch. No plan, no guile and no pace.’

‘We did dominate the ball but as ever did relatively little to really threaten with it.

Newcastle allowed us that and waited to hit us on the break, and in that respect always looked more likely to score than we did.

TBH we were fortunate that mostly they were rubbish at converting good chances. A more clinical side would have scored three or four (again).’

‘Shelvey was largely anonymous, in fact none of their players stood out except Lascelles. Shows how dire we have become that a poor Newcastle side come to town and don’t even have to put in a ‘performance’ to beat us.’

‘Just watching extended highlights

Newcastle had the better chances, especially in the first half, but those excellent saves from their goalkeeper, ensured the 3 points went their way.

Fine margins.’

‘What little he had to do he did exceptionally well.

Definitely a man of the match performance which really does give a very warped view of the match itself.

Hadn’t really heard much of him prior to day but one well worth keeping an eye on.’

‘We are going down.’

‘Benitez knows we have no pace. Put Gayle on to run at tired legs. He’s done us like a dinner.’

‘Shelvey is one ugly f….. but I’d have him here.’

‘We are utterly hopeless and Hughes just stands there and watches it. Accepts it. Get out of our club.’

‘Looked like a penno (Zouma on Gayle) to me. Lucky again.’

‘Turn the light off, it’s over.’

‘Time to go Mr. Hughes.’

‘Pity it had to come from an Adam mistake.

This is the day when our fate is sealed.

Wave hello to the championship.’

‘I can’t describe how much I hate Mark Hughes for what he’s done to my team.’

‘This is a shocking performance vs a very s… team (No disrespect to newcastle).’

‘That felt like the first proper relegation match we’ve played this season.

Aaaand, long story short…

We lost.’

‘Hughes said on 5 Live:

‘If we had kept a clean sheet up to Half time at Chelsea – we could have gone on and get something out of the game.

The fans today are naturally disappointed because of the high standards that I have set but which are not being delivered now.

Who else is there to do this job? I am the best person to do it.

You can only listen to that and decide whether to cry or puke up.’

‘Utterly dreadful. Just hit and hope up to Crouch, and let them win the second ball. No guile or finesse and made a poor Newcastle team look decent.’

‘Stoke City Terrorised first half by 4 players in the opposing team possessing championship footballing skills – but also had all the things we do not i.e. Pace, energy,  fitness  and movement,

The 4 lads in question terrorized our lumbering defence, time after time first half and cut us to ribbons down our left hand side.’



  • Rich Lawson

    We were much the better of two poor teams,if we had a proper centre forward we would be out of sight of relegation.

    • gallowgate26

      Too right. When we had Remy/Ba we were going for Europe with not much difference to the other 10 players. In fact you could argue we have a better defence now than we’ve had for a very long time… It’s a proper goal scorer that turns the draws into wins and defeats into draws.

      • Mitros gotta start

        And a proper manager that picks the best players that are available to him and doesnt chop and change the team just for the sake of it.

        • Vladimir Biggski

          He’s the best manager we will have in our lifetime

  • john gibson

    Were desperate we need a new manager or were a champinship side next season Give Martin oneil or Harry Rednapp a call they would keep us up Gibbo

    • Dillon Tovak

      I hope you’re a Stoke fan visiting.

  • john gibson

    Castle desrved the win Stoke only started playing once Castle scored im a stokie but theywanted it more

    • justchampion

      Don’t you mean ‘oke?

  • They deserve win

  • Wor Lass

    It`s funny how home and away fans see things differently. I don`t remeber seeing anyone, either writer or fan, saying that Jonjo was especially outstanding.

    • TheNutJob

      he was better than his last couple of games, i think the boss had a word

    • Damon Horner

      Think TheNutJob did because I remember being confused by it! Admittedly he did better than I thought.

    • gallowgate26

      True but I think some of our fans just take for granted that Shelvey is going to ping a 40 yard raker across to the opposite winger, Gerrard/Lampard style. His passing really is immense and what made him the standout player in the championship, even if more inconsistent in the PL. Stoke fans are probably not used to seeing a long pass unless it’s aimed to the head of lanky Larry…

      • thewildchimp

        He’s world class in that department but, sadly, too predictable. Maybe it’s the forwards’ fault or strict tactics, I don’t know…

  • Leazes

    Letting United beat you is surely a sackable offence?

    • TheNutJob

      😂😂😂

  • Alan Pardew

    I’ve got great respect for Mark, but he knows as well as I do that on the sideline he’s going to try to find every margin to win the game and so am I

    When I’ve seen Mark on the sideline he’s controlled enough. His focus is on his team and my focus is on my team. The media’s focus will be on the team that loses.

    • Damon Horner

      Your focus should be on West Ham and not begging for games to be postponed! 😉

    • Vladimir Biggski

      Are you getting anyone over the line in January Pards?

    • Dennis Tate

      Love it when losing managers never blame themselves and have zero respect on the winning team.
      Mark Hughes is a prime example at Stoke v Newcastle.
      Spat his dummy and walked out during his post match interview when questioned about his team selections.
      He picks the players so what is his problem, only being asked polite questions at the interview.
      As the saying goes a bad craftsman always blames his tools.
      Newcastle could of easily had the game wrapped up in the first halve.
      Damon Horner is also spot on with his comment to you.
      Get into the real world Alan where Joe Public works 5, 6 or 7 days a week and you are twisting on that your team has to do extra games in 1 week.
      4 games = 6 hours work and you have more than 11 men to choose from.

  • NUFCDan

    Interesting that the opposition fans see what Benitez did tactically and how it contributed to us winning the match.

    • GToon

      It was noticeable watching how when our midfield picked up the ball they tried to run forward quickly, especially Perez. I credit Rafa with seeing the damage this tactic could do when stoke had Adam in the middle. Not exactly quick is he. Well done Rafa.

  • Jezza

    It’s noticeable that you always seem to get more fair and balanced comments from fans of the less glamorous, less successful teams (no disrespect) than you get from fans of the so called “big” clubs. That’s the difference between true football supporters and bandwagon jumping glory seekers.

    • GToon

      Yeah, compare the comments from the fans of a team we have just beaten with those of a team who recently wiped the floor with us. A certain team in light blue shirts who used to be not very good……

  • gallowgate26

    ”Newcastle allowed us that and waited to hit us on the break, and in that respect always looked more likely to score than we did.”… In boxing, it’s called rope-a-dope, Mr Benitez is one of the best in the business at away games, defending and counter attacking.

  • Gandalf Greyhame

    Hmmmm, watched the highlights and the video of the winning goal and it is interesting when you break that play down in terms of the Stoke players responsible for the losing goal.
    Eh, how come NOBODY has commented on the following details of that winning goal scored by Ayoze Perez:
    1. Charlie Adam started the play by playing a boneheaded square pass almost directly to Jacob Murphy
    2. Adam was still 3-4 feet behind Murphy when that happened, took forever to realize he had made a horrible mistake and was slow to start the chase after Murphy, then rapidly lost ground, and you can tell gave up and quit towards the end
    3. As it was, Murphy who is not one of the fastest players on the Newcastle team, barely managed to outrun Adam, even after turning on the jets when he realized NOBODY on the Stoke team was in front of him
    4. Nobody on the Stoke team really bothered to run back at full speed to cover either Murphy or Perez. NOBODY. I mean, right before Murphy makes his pass, you can see FIVE Stoke players slowly loping back in the frame vs. three Newcastle players. Dwight Gayle had also started a run to the goal also, but for reasons known only to him, decided to slow down (waiting for the rebound off the goalie? Giving up because he knew Perez was going to miss or score? Tired?)
    5. Kevin Wimmer, Stoke’s £18,000,000 centerback from Tottenham, made only a half-hearted run towards Murphy, Newcastle’s £12,000,000 signing from Norwich, not fast enough to stop him from getting off the pass.
    6. Murphy did make a terrific pass, into space, which was just beyond the reach of the covering Stoke centerback, Geoff Cameron, and out of range of the Stoke goalie, and right onto Perez’s right foot for the score.
    7. OK, I’m from the U.S. and I’m a fan of the US men’s national team (I follow Newcastle because of Yedlin), and if you know anything about that fiasco, you’ll know that the US is not in the 2018 World Cup because the US team, needing only a tie against microscopic Trinidad and Tobago to qualify, instead lost 2-1, thanks to an own goal by Omar Gonzalez. US fans were astounded that US coach Bruce Arena had selected Omar Gonzalez in that match, well known for his propensity for at least one boneheaded play per game, instead of Geoff Cameron, who was left on the bench in that game. Cameron plays in the EPL! How could you pick Omar over an established EPL player! shouted US fans. Well, maybe playing for Stoke doesn’t really count as playing in the EPL.
    8. I hate to dump on another American citizen like Geoff Cameron, he really did used to be a terrific player, but like much of the rest of the Stoke team, at age 32, he’s getting old and slower. Charlie Adam is 32. So far, I have not seen the US soccer news media pick up the fact that Cameron was the nearest Stoke player to be beaten by the winning goal. So far, I have not seen the Stoke media, or the Stoke fans pick up the fact that Charlie Adam was personally responsible for that play happening in the first place.
    9. Newcastle also has lots of players who are not so fast (i.e., good for Championship, have a hard time in the EPL), but it does have a few very fast players who have the potential for maturing into the EPL. Stoke seems to be one slow, old team and getting older.
    10. Mark Hughes, if he is guilty of anything, is guilty of not being given enough money to replace his aging players, who used to be good enough for a mid table finish, but are now clearly struggling as they age and slow down.

  • Monkseaton Magpies

    Shelvey did run the game against should have started against Brighton and we could be two points smarter. Him and our club captain should be the first two names on the team sheet with Ritchie and Perez next for their work rate through in Atsu then it’s agood starting line up.

    • Vladimir Biggski

      And Ritchie, Clark and yedlin

      We just need a good solid keeper and striker to keep us up

  • Gandalf Greyhame

    OK, getting my post deleted, probably too long, so I will try a shorter version:
    1. Charlie Adam started the play by playing a boneheaded square pass almost directly to Jacob Murphy
    2. Adam was still 3-4 feet behind Murphy when that happened, took forever to realize he had made a horrible mistake and was slow to start the chase after Murphy, then rapidly lost ground, and you can tell gave up and quit towards the end
    3. As it was, Murphy who is not one of the fastest players on the Newcastle team, barely managed to outrun Adam, even after turning on the jets when he realized NOBODY on the Stoke team was in front of him
    4. Nobody on the Stoke team really bothered to run back at full speed to cover either Murphy or Perez. NOBODY. I mean, right before Murphy makes his pass, you can see FIVE Stoke players slowly loping back in the frame vs. three Newcastle players (Dwight Gayle was the third Newcastle player)
    5. Charlie Adam is 32. He is getting old and slow. His mistake was similer to Henri Saivet’s in the West Ham game, but so far, I have not seen the Stoke media or fans make much of the fact that he was responsible for that Newcastle winning score, preferring to blame Mark Hughes instead. Why?

    • thewildchimp

      Yup. They just couldn’t be arsed to defend. I can sort of sympathize with Shaqiri, since he is too bulky for football and is probably hard for him to build decent stamina, but what excuse do the rest of them have? Absolutely criminal, and in front of the home crowd, too.