Aug 19, 2017 at 5.30pm UK at ​bet365 Stadium
Attendance: 29,459
StokeStoke City
1-0
Arsenal
Rodriguez (47')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Mark Hughes questions Stoke City's fixture schedule

Hughes questions Stoke's fixture schedule
© Getty Images
Stoke City manager Mark Hughes suggests that the Potters always receive tough starts to the Premier League season.

Stoke City manager Mark Hughes has claimed that the Potters always receive a tougher start to the Premier League than other clubs in the top flight.

Last weekend, Stoke began the campaign with a 1-0 defeat away at Everton, while they host Arsenal on Saturday evening as they look to avoid suffering consecutive setbacks.

The Staffordshire outfit must also play Manchester United and Chelsea in their opening six fixtures, and Hughes has gone on record in querying how the fixture list is compiled.

The 53-year-old told reporters: "Arsenal are a good side who always look like they can create and take chances.

"We always have difficult starts and that is how it's been since we've been in the Premier League. Other teams have it at different times."

In comparison, Stoke faced Manchester City, Everton, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United in their first seven games last season.

At the beginning of the 2015-16 campaign, Stoke were paired with Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal during their opening five contests.

Mark Hughes watches on during the Premier League game between Bournemouth and Stoke City on May 6, 2017
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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City1211104073334
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd128222762126
3Chelsea1281323101325
4Tottenham HotspurSpurs127232091123
5Liverpool126422417722
6Arsenal127142216622
7Burnley12642129322
8Watford125341921-218
9Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton124441313016
10Leicester CityLeicester134451718-116
11Huddersfield TownHuddersfield12435817-915
12Newcastle UnitedNewcastle124261114-314
13Bournemouth124171114-313
14Southampton12345914-513
15Stoke CityStoke123451524-913
16Everton123361224-1212
17West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom12246918-910
18West Ham UnitedWest Ham132381126-159
19Swansea CitySwansea12228715-88
20Crystal Palace12129624-185
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