Stoke City vs Swansea City team news: Butland and Abraham return in potential six-pointer

A look at the team news from the bet365 Stadium.

Stoke City vs Swansea City team news: Butland and Abraham
return in potential six-pointer
Stoke City vs Swansea City team news: Butland and Abraham return in potential six-pointer

Stoke City goalkeeper Jack Butland makes his first appearance since breaking his finger on international duty with England.

While Swansea City striker Tammy Abraham is back in the side after missing the past two games, he will partner Wilfried Bony upfront.

Abraham didn’t start in the 0-0 draw with Bournemouth last weekend, and was ineligible to play in the 1-0 loss against his parent club Chelsea in midweek.

The England forward was stretchered off in the 2-0 defeat away to Burnley with a back problem.

Abraham and Bony have only played together once before, in the 1-0 loss away to West Ham United in September.

Swansea make three changes in total, as Leroy Fer and Sam Clucas also come in while Renato Sanches, Roque Mesa and Tom Carroll miss out. 

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Crouch continues

Peter Crouch continues up front for Stoke, in what could be either a 3-4-3 or 4-4-2.

Crouch has been pushing for a start over several weeks after impressive performances off the bench, and the 36-year-old recently signed a new one-year deal at the club.

The striker did start in the 3-0 defeat to Liverpool in midweek.

Shawcross milestone

While Stoke club captain Ryan Shawcross will make his 300th Premier League game for the club at the heart of their three-man defence.

Shawcross will start alongside Kurt Zouma, the Chelsea loanee that had more shots on target in November than the entire Swansea squad.

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Sanches out

Sanches has been dropped from the starting lineup, as Jordan Ayew takes over in the ‘number 10’ role.

Sanches was the focus of some criticism during Swansea’s last two games, and was substituted off at half time against Chelsea after infamously passing to the advertising board rather than a teammate.

Federico Fernandez misses his third and last game due to a family bereavement while Kyle Bartley remains sidelined after knee surgery.

While Mark Hughes did previously hint at changing to a 4-4-2 system with Mame Biram Diouf joining Crouch up front and Zouma moving to right-back.

Swansea have just one Premier League win in their last 11 games, while Stoke have just a single win in their last seven league games.

Stoke starting XI: Butland; Zouma, Shawcross, Indi; Diouf, Fletcher, Allen, Pieters; Shaqiri, Choupo-Moting, Crouch.

Swansea starting XI:Fabianski; Naughton, van der Hoorn, Mawson, Olsson; Fer, Ki, Clucas; Ayew, Bony, Abraham.