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Preview: Blues v Stoke City

I'm sure that Boxing Day is going to be a fantastic atmosphere and I can't wait.

Garry Monk

Our full match preview ahead of Wednesday's Sky Bet Championship fixture against the Potters at the St. Andrew's Trillion Trophy Stadium (3.00pm kick-off).

Garry Monk on what he took from his side's 3-0 win at Wigan last time out...
"I thought we were really professional, clinical and disciplined against Wigan. We managed to keep a clean sheet as well which was good game management. Those four things have to be at a high level in any game, but especially away from home."

Garry Monk on the impact that Che Adams and Lukas Jutkiewicz continue to have...
"With the confidence they have at the moment, when Jukey and Che are in front of goal, you expect a goal. They're a handful and they have been quite for a quite a while now. The challenge for them now is to take that into the second-half of the season."

Garry Monk on Blues' positive work from set-pieces...
"We're good at set-pieces in terms of the principals we follow. I thought we were good at both ends against Wigan. Wigan put a couple of dangerous free-kicks in in the second-half and I thought that we dealt with them really well. We also looked a threat ourselves every time we had a set-piece."

Garry Monk on the massive 4,500 away fans that followed Blues up to Wigan...
"A big part of this season has been our fans and to take 4,500 was fantastic. They're coming because they believe in the team and the effort and commitment. We have to give them something back, especially at this time of year when money is hard to come by. They can have a good Christmas Day and be ready for the Boxing Day game against Stoke."

Garry Monk on welcoming Stoke City to the St. Andrew's Trillion Trophy Stadium on Boxing Day...
"I'm sure that Boxing Day is going to be a fantastic atmosphere and I can't wait. There's no pressure on us because we're not expected to be doing what we're doing. We'll give our maximum and everything we've got and embrace it We've stepped it up a level in the last couple of games in terms of the standard. The challenge is can we maintain that, but it becomes more difficult as the season goes on."

Stoke Manager Gary Rowett's comments ahead of the game...
"This division tests you week in, week out - believe me, it doesn’t matter who you are up against, so we will take the positives from today (against Millwall) and look forward to Birmingham City on Boxing Day.”

Blues team news...
Garry Monk is hoping to have Kristian Pedersen available, after the left-back missed the win against Wigan Athletic with a slight ankle injury. Mar Roberts (calf), David Davis (ankle) and Isaac Vassell (hip) are out.

Stoke team news...
Defender Erik Pieters is doubtful after picking up a minor hamstring injury during Stoke's win against Millwall.

Last five meetings between Blues and Stoke ...
Championship 20 Oct 2018 Stoke 0 Blues 1
Capital One Cup 29 Oct 2013 Blues 4 Stoke 4
Premier League 12 Feb 2011 Blues 1 Stoke 0
Premier League 09 Nov 2010 Stoke 3 Blues 2
Premier League 28 Dec 2009 Stoke 0 Blues 1

Form guide. Last five Championship fixtures....
Blues: WWLDW
Stoke City: WDWDW

Head to head...
Blues wins: 33
Stoke wins: 42
Draws: 23

Ticket news...
This game is already close to a sell-out. There is very limited availability in the Gil Merrick Upper and also limited restricted view seats available. For prices and purchasing details click here.

BluesTV…
This fixture will be available to watch live on BluesTV for £10. A change in EFL broadcasting regulations now allows for non-televised Bank Holiday matches and re-arranged fixtures to be streamed at the discretion of the home side. UK and international supporters can purchase a live stream of this game on a pay-per-view basis for just £10. The multi-camera broadcast will be commentated on by Jonathan Bell and Brian Hughes, plus a pre-match show hosted by Dale Moon and Dele Adebola commencing at 2.40pm. Existing international package subscribers will not need to purchase a pay-per-view package, as it is included within their current subscription. If you would like to subscribe to BluesTV, please click here.

Match officials…
Darren Bond will take charge of the Boxing Day fixture against the Potters. So far this season, the Lancashire-based official has refereed 19 games where he has produced a total of 50 yellow cards and two reds. The last Blues game he refereed was our Sky Bet Championship home fixture against Sheffield Wednesday in October. Blues won that game 3-1 and Wednesday midfielder Joel Pelupessy was the only player form either side to be cautioned. The last Stoke match he refereed was their Championship home fixture against Hull City in August, which the Potters won 2-0. Midfielder James McClean was cautioned for the hosts, with Tigers midfielder Evandro Goebel sent off after collecting two yellow cards. Mr Bond will be assisted by Jonathon Hunt and Dean Treleaven, with Mark Jones acting as the fourth official.

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