Mark Hughes: ‘Stephen Ireland will play for Stoke again’ despite leg break

Mark Hughes was speaking about the extent of Stephen Ireland’s broken leg ahead of Stoke final game of the season.

Hughes’s side, who can still claim ninth spot in the Barclays Premier League this term to match their final position for the last two seasons under him, will conclude their campaign with a home clash against West Ham.

However Ireland’s double fracture is expected to keep the 29-year-old, whose current contract runs to the summer of 2017, out for eight or nine months.

Mark Hughes: ‘Stephen Ireland will play for Stoke again’ despite leg break

Stoke suffered the blow in the build-up to the fixture earlier this week when it emerged that the midfielder had broken his leg in training.

"It is a bad injury unfortunately - a double fracture," Hughes said today.

"They are very rare and unfortunately Stephen is going to be out for a significant amount of time, probably eight to nine months.

"But the surgeon was very happy with the result of the operation he has had.

"He has had a pin in it and by all accounts it went as well as it could have done, so that is a positive and on that basis, Stephen will play for Stoke again."

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