Stoke City stumble in the snow against Bournemouth by 0-1

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Stoke 0 Boscombe 1 – 2/1/21 7.45

A tactical match played out mainly in midfield that resulted in a single clear-cut chance in the 2nd half, that Bournemouth put away. Stoke lost Fletcher and thus never looked like scoring. It’s going to be a cold cold January for Stoke, unless they get someone in to score some goals. Here’s how it unfolded in real time:

Asmir Begovic is STILL making a living after messing up his career by becoming 3rd choice at Chelsea. But Bournemouth are 2nd favourites to go up, and the fear is that they may pummel Stoke like Norwich did for an hour. Hallelujah, Vokes is replaced by returning Fletcher. Mikel for Brown is also a positive step.
8.11 Mikel somehow loses the ball, and then somehow gets it back! What does he think he’s doing?!
9.54 McClean joins the long list of Stoke players that have slid into the advertisement hoardings. 55 seconds later Fletcher does the same.
17.55 Begovic is being kept busy, as Thompson’s free kick just flies past the post. Only Shawcross (on bench) will remember Asmir at Stoke, although Mikel will remember his debacle at Chelsea.
21.44 Joe Bursik is tested, rushing out at Soulanke (who’s given Chester the slip) and encourages the AFC player to loft the ball just over the bar. Best chance so far.
24.24 Fletcher lands badly, and he’s replaced by Jacob Brown, leaving Stoke without an out-and-out striker.
45+2 HT Begovic’s old club 0 Asmir’s new club 0
57.20 Capt James Chester gets a weird yellow card for blocking a ball being thrown in too quick. Thompson at least got a yellow for a fully-blown body-check (& genuinely thought he was going to get away with just a warning).
66.33 McClean puts the ball in the net, but Powell is supposed to have nudged defender Captain Cook as the ball was crossed. Replays suggest there was negligible contact. Ref all at sea.
68.40 Sam Clucas on for Thompson. At last a goal scorer is coming on. The game is end to end midfield movement, which is good to watch if you’re a dedicated tactician.
72.05 McClean is yellowed as he slips into a tackle. Unfortunate.
78.59 0-1 !! Stanislas catches Stoke flat, Collins in particular as a long ball from Lewis Cook is played through to him, and he puts it away neatly. Stoke don’t deserve to lose this, but will probably do so.
83.30 McClean & Smith replaced by Vokes and Tymon. Is this 4-4-2? Bournemouth switch into their traditional time-wasting mode.
95.15 Vokes stabs at the ball, but fails to connect, so Boscombe win 1-0. Stoke are 8th, but AFC go up to 3rd.