After a miserable start to the campaign, all is now rosy in the garden for Stoke City – with the Potters now up to ninth place in the Premier League. But one man who isn’t feeling the good vibes is out-of-favour forward Wilfried Bony.
The Ivorian joined on loan from Manchester City during summer 2016, with hopes of more game time, but has played just six minutes of the Potters’ past 16 Premier League fixtures (or 22.5 seconds per game, in case you were wondering).
Having been ousted in the first-team by 36-year-old Peter Crouch, it’s fair to say the loanee is rather unhappy with the current situation, and he launched a stinging attack on boss Mark Hughes earlier this week.
The Bingerville native claimed: “’I am not playing for no reason”. He continuing: “’It is really crazy when the people say you are fine and that everything is okay, but you don’t play. I can say it is like maybe to p*** you off, that you don’t play.”
However, while his recent outburst could well mean the end of Bony at Stoke, he’s unlikely to be short of options when plotting his next move.
West Ham United have tried to sign him twice already, including an attempt to prise him from Manchester City last summer. The 28-year-old turned them down on that occasion, but he could now be far more keen on a switch to east London, following his miserable tenure in Staffordshire.
Another potential move comes in the form of a return to Eredivisie side Vitesse Arnheim. Now cash rich, there’s a good chance the Dutch side could afford to bring the Ivorian back into their ranks – even if it’s just a loan deal to boost his confidence and get him scoring again.
And we wouldn’t rule out a return to the Liberty Stadium either. Bony was beloved at Swansea City during his two seasons with the club, scoring 35 goals in 70 games, and could provide the ideal foil for the Swans’ current striking ace, Fernando Llorente.
Next up for Stoke City is the visit of Chelsea on Saturday, with 19/4 for the hosts to enjoy victory.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing