Mark Hughes and Peter Crouch react to Stoke City’s EFL Cup victory over Stevenage
- Credit: Archant
Stoke City manager Mark Hughes said his side were excellent as they progressed to the EFL Cup third round at the expense of Stevenage at the Lamex Stadium.
Former Liverpool and England striker Peter Crouch bagged a hat-trick and Phil Bardsley crashed home the other from distance for the Premier League side as they impressed in a 4-0 victory.
Of the display against Darren Sarll’s men last night (Wednesday), Hughes said: “It was important that we did it in the correct manner, I think everybody saw that we did.
“We approached it in the right way and we knew they were going to go quite direct so we were ready for that.
“I thought we were excellent, the back four with Shay [Given] behind them were in control with whatever they threw at us and in the end our extra quality clearly took the game away from them.
“[There were ] some excellent goals as well and a clean sheet so all in all it was a really satisfying evening.”
Of his hat-trick hero Crouch, who has not featured in the Premier League for the Potters so far this season, Hughes said: “I thought he was excellent.
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“He was a good focal point for us, led the line well and gave us that option of being able to get the good quality balls in and even when they weren’t of the required quality he would try to make something of them.
“Our attitude of what we had to do was spot on and I’m really pleased about that aspect.”
Stoke’s other star man on the night was Joe Allen their £13million summer signing from Liverpool
Of his fellow Welshman, Hughes added: “We knew what we were getting with Joe.
“He’s high energy, he’s box to box, he gets round people, his quality on the ball is there for everybody to see, he has good appreciation of people around him.
“He’s a complete midfield player in my view.”
Stevenage’s tormentor Crouch knew the League Two side could cause his team a difficult night so was pleased to progress in the competition.
“We came here, we were very professional and we got the job done and we’re very pleased to move on,” the 35-year-old said.
Of netting his first hat-trick since bagging one for Spurs in a Champions League qualifier against Young Boys in 2010, he added: “The service was fantastic and I thrive on that.
“I always believe that if the crosses come in, if we get the right kind of service, the goals will come.
“I have done that in the past and I’ll continue to do that and I was pleased firstly to be playing again, but to get the goals was a great feeling.
“I was delighted to get the hat-trick and hopefully give the manager something to think about at the weekend.”