Top-club pedigree or rejects? Whichever way you look at it, Stoke City have some big names in their squad – and the additions of Wilfried Bony and Bruno Martins Indi only add to this fact.
In the past the club has been known as a tough-tackling, sturdy team famously difficult to visit, particularly on soggy Tuesdays. Now though they have some players capable of precise, good-looking football – and they come from some top clubs too.
Oh and goalkeeper Shay Given was at the Etihad as well. Midfielder Stephen Ireland was too – but some may argue this was before City were universally known as a top club.
Okay so Marc Muniesa only played 2 games for the Catalan giants – but Bojan Krkic and Ibrahim Afellay have 125 appearances between them.
There are four ex-Reds in the team, including the newly-signed £13m Joe Allen, fellow midfielder Charlie Adam, right back Glen Johnson and target-man Peter Crouch.
Perhaps they should add a bit more red to that stripey kit…
Ryan Shawcross was a Red Devils man also, although he went out on loan and never got a seniors game at Sir Alex Ferguson’s team.
Many may wonder what links these two giants of the game. There is an answer from Stoke City – Xherdan Shaqiri.
The Switzerland international spent three years at the German champions, before moving to Inter Milan for €15 million in 2015. After only 15 games and one goal at the San Siro, Shaqiri moved on to – you guessed it, The Potters.
What top-club pedigree list would be complete without Real Madrid getting a mention – and you’ll never believe it, but Stoke can provide one.
Stoke striker Joselu played for Madrid. See – there’s a picture and everything!
Okay, so he only played one game, but he did score. He got 40 in 72 games for Real Madrid B too.
Looks like visitors will need to worry about a lot more than wet and windy Tuesday nights when they visit The Potters this season…