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

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.

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Mark Hughes watches on during the Premier League game between Bournemouth and Stoke City on May 6, 2017
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City27233179205972
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd27175551193256
3Liverpool27159361313054
4Chelsea27165649232653
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs27157552242852
6Arsenal27136851361545
7Burnley279992124-336
8Leicester CityLeicester2798103940-135
9Everton2797113246-1434
10Bournemouth2787123141-1031
11Watford2786133747-1030
12West Ham UnitedWest Ham2779113446-1230
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2777132536-1128
14Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton27610112236-1428
15Crystal Palace2769122542-1727
16Swansea CitySwansea2776142037-1727
17Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2776142347-2427
18Southampton27511112840-1226
19Stoke CityStoke2767142753-2625
20West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom27311132140-1920
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