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Hughes praises Stoke match-winner Arnautovic

SoccerNews in English Premier League 8 Nov 2015

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Stoke City manager Mark Hughes lauded Marko Arnautovic for not only his memorable match-winning goal but his overall effort against Chelsea.

Arnautovic’s acrobatic second-half strike saw Stoke heap further misery on the embattled Premier League champions via a 1-0 victory on Saturday.

The Austria international netted a scissor kick eight minutes after the break to help Stoke end their two-match winless run in the league.

Speaking of Arnautovic’s exploits post-game, Hughes said: “I scored a few like that but that was because I was poor in the air, but the same goes for Marko to be perfectly honest.

“He took the choice to take it on, it was good skill. I thought he was excellent today both offensively and defensively which a number of the players had to be.”

Spain international forward Pedro hit the post late on as Chelsea slumped to a seventh Premier League defeat and back-to-back losses to Stoke, who dumped the Londoners out of the League Cup on penalties last month.

“It was very similar to the game in the cup, when Chelsea came out the blocks really fast. The likes of Willian and [Eden] Hazard will always take the game to you,” Hughes added.

“At times you have to ride your luck but overall we deserved the luck of the game and played a real part in the game. We took the game to Chelsea with good effect on numerous occasions and counter-attacked well when under pressure so all in all pleased with the performance.

“The key was to be a little more compact and hold possession. In transition we looked a little open so we just wanted to tighten that up so that we had good numbers around the ball. We wanted the players to back their ability against the best and that is what they did.”

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