One of the primary tenets of sports betting is understanding the importance of value. Understanding how the odds work is obviously key, but that’s where most amateur bettors wind up falling short. Most preseason odds would have told you that Stoke City would not be among the clubs at risk of relegation, but through 22 matches the Potters are currently 18th and squarely in the relegation zone.
The team’s sluggish start cost manager Mark Hughes his job last week, but the club have still not yet tabbed his full-time replacement. However, The Mirror reported Wednesday that Stoke may have their sights set on Ireland boss Martin O’Neill.
O’Neill, 65, is reportedly weighing his options moving forward. His Ireland side were ousted in a World Cup playoff against Denmark late last year, and his future with the national team is uncertain. Ireland would reportedly like to keep O’Neill, but a move to England could be tempting for the veteran manager.
Stoke are reportedly interested in a manager with Premier League experience to help lead them out of the relegation zone, and O’Neill certainly checks that box. He has previously enjoyed spells coaching Leicester City, Aston Villa and Sunderland in the league.
O’Neill has reportedly previously agreed to a two-year extension to stay with Ireland, but he may have to go back on his word if his interest in a move back to England is too strong.
Former Stoke midfielder Graham Potter is another name that has been thrown into the mix as Hughes’ potential replacement. The Potters’ brass is reportedly interested in Potter, though they would prefer to pair the inexperienced 42-year-old with a highly experienced assistant if he were to get the job.
Potter made 59 appearances for Stoke between 1993 and 1996. He has made a name for himself in Sweden, where he has led Ostersunds to a trio of promotions, culminating in a Swedish Cup trophy last season. Ostersunds has made waves this season in the Europa League, where they have taken down heavy hitters like Galatasaray and Hertha Berlin. His side also earned a draw with Atletico Bilbao.
Hughes was sacked after Stoke’s embarrassing loss in the FA Cup at the hands of Coventry.