Swansea manager Michael Laudrup has spoken of his fear that fatigue could play a part in the rest of his side’s season, after their poor showing at the Emirates in midweek despite the slender 1-0 defeat to Arsenal. With one eye on the second leg of their Capital One Cup Semi Final with Chelsea, Laudrup could rotate his starting XI once again for the visit of Stoke, the Swans’ sixth game in 19 days.
Fortunately, the legendary Dane has a near fully-fit to choose from, with only full back Neil Taylor a long-term absentee with a broken leg. Danny Graham, Kyle Bartley and Nathan Dyer, who all played in midweek could miss out, with Michu, Pablo Hernandez and Ashley Williams returning in their places.
Stoke boss Tony Pulis will look to continue his side’s improved away record of late and is likely to again select Jonathan Walters, who recovered from scoring two own goals and missing a penalty against Chelsea last week by finding the net twice at the right end in his side’s 4-1 FA Cup third round replay win over Crystal Palace in the week.
Who partners him will currently be highest on Pulis’ agenda, who must choose between the in-form Kenwyne Jones, a reported Swansea transfer target, and Peter Crouch, who is without a goal since late September though that came in a brace scored against Saturday’s opponents Swansea.
Only Rory Delap (hernia) and Marc Wilson (broken leg) remain on the sidelines for the Potters.