MX23RW : Thursday, December 9 02:33:44| >> :120:15802:15802:
Oct 27, 2021 at 7.45pm UK at Bet365 Stadium
StokeStoke City
Sawyers (57')
Skiri Oestigaard (52')
FT(HT: 0-2)
Canos (22'), Toney (40')
Ghoddos (76')

Preview: Stoke City vs. Brentford - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Wednesday's EFL Cup clash between Stoke City and Brentford, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Brentford will look to continue their strong start to the season when they face Stoke City in the EFL Cup fourth round on Wednesday evening.

However, like their hosts, the Bees head into the contest at the bet365 Stadium having lost their last two matches in the league.

Match preview

Brentford manager Thomas Frank on October 24, 2021© Reuters

On the back of another spirited performance which ultimately resulted in no points, Thomas Frank will have mixed feeling regarding the current state of play at Brentford.

Although the Dane would have undoubtedly taken 12 points from nine Premier League matches before the start of the season, there is a feeling of what could have been after narrow defeats to Chelsea and Leicester City.

On the plus side, the Bees remain eight points clear of the relegation zone, another scenario which would have left Frank more than satisfied had it been guaranteed at the beginning of August.

While Brentford are effectively stuck between ambitions where the rest of the campaign is concerned, they will continue to view the EFL Cup as a competition to get fringe members up to speed.

Home ties with Forest Green Rovers and Oldham Athletic have proven ideal, the London outfit netting 10 goals across those two meetings with League Two opposition.

Stoke City's manager Michael O'Neill pictured on September 25, 2021© Reuters

Stoke will provide a step up in class, despite the Potters currently experiencing their first difficult spell in the Championship this season.

Defeats to Sheffield United, Bournemouth and Millwall - all by one-goal margins - have left Michael O'Neill's men down in ninth position in the standings.

The bizarre occurrence of seven teams all being locked on the same points makes matter look worse than they actually are, but there is no doubt that Stoke need to find a second wind over the coming weeks.

Like his opposite number, O'Neill will use this fixture to rotate his squad, potentially handing a first start in more than 10 months to highly-regarded Tyrese Campbell.

Stoke hold the remarkable record of never losing a home fixture to Brentford in their entire history, a run which started in 1936 and has lasted 14 matches.

Stoke City EFL Cup form:
  • W
  • W
  • W

Stoke City form (all competitions):
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • L

Brentford EFL Cup form:
  • W
  • W

Brentford form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • L

Team News

Brentford's Marcus Forss celebrates scoring their fifth goal against Oldham in the EFL Cup on September 21, 2021© Reuters

While Vitaly Janelt could return from a thigh injury, Brentford are again expected to be without Shandon Baptiste and Yoane Wissa.

Nevertheless, Kristoffer Ajer should be given a starting role after injury, while Marcus Forss will expect to replace Ivan Toney in attack.

The likes of Alvaro Fernandez, Charlie Goode and Mads Bidstrup are also in line for a rare outing.

Tommy Smith, Sam Clucas and Nick Powell are among the players who will miss out for Stoke, forcing O'Neil to use a number of players from the weekend.

However, the likes of Danny Batth, Demeaco Duhaney, Jordan Thompson, Tom Ince, Steven Fletcher and Campbell are all in line to come into the starting lineup.

Stoke City possible starting lineup:
Davies; Ostigard, Batth, Chester; Duhaney, Sawyers, Thompson, Vrancic, Ince; Fletcher, Campbell

Brentford possible starting lineup:
Fernandez; Goode, Zanka, Ajer; Roerslev, Bidstrup, Janelt, Maghoma, Stevens; Ghoddos, Forss

SM words green background

We say: Stoke City 1-2 Brentford

Both teams will make sweeping changes to their starting lineups, and it should help the chances of a competitive game occurring in the Potteries. While we would not be surprised if this fixture goes to penalties, we are backing the visitors to prevail by the odd goal in three.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data

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Brentford's Ivan Toney celebrates scoring their first goal against Swansea City in the Championship playoff final on May 29, 2021
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