Potters must use their wide boys to open QPR defence
I' D like to start by quoting England rugby coach Stuart Lancaster after he said this week that a good team needs three things.
That's team spirit, tactical and technical cohesion, and finally good players with form and fitness.
Until last week, Stoke had all three, while I'm not sure QPR have had any of them at all this season.
Let's start with Rangers, who come here seeking their first win since beating Stoke at the end of last season.
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Millions have been spent on fees and wages to bring in a bucket load of new players.
But what we seem to have is a team full of individuals, not a team working together, certainly not when they lose the ball.
Players such as Djibril Cisse, Adel Taarabt and Junior Hoilett are given a free role and allowed to do what they want in a sense.
That makes them dangerous if you give them time and space because they are off-the-cuff players capable of hitting you with the unpredictable.
But once QPR lose the ball, I don't see them functioning as a unit because they don't work hard enough to organise themselves to cut off the channels and pockets of space.
What I'd like to see from Stoke today is two genuine wingers to offer the width that will stretch QPR and cause them problems.
Peter Crouch has not had the support or the service of late, but hopefully wingers getting into positions to cross the ball will change all that.
I'd bring back Matthew Etherington on the left and keep Michael Kightly on the right, then switch Jon Walters inside to give Crouch that support he needs.
I just think Walters is that bit farther forward in that role than Charlie Adam, plus Walters is happier there and certainly has far more chance of scoring.
I'm afraid Adam would be the one to miss out today if I had my way.
It's just a case of horses for courses and so I certainly wouldn't be binning him for good.
Indeed, we may well need three in midfield at West Ham next time out so I might well recall him straight away for that one.
We need two holding midfielders this afternoon to give our centre-halves that bit of protection against the likes of Taarabt looking for the killer pass and Cisse looking to add to last week's goal against Reading.
I think the Stoke fans will be fine with their players this afternoon because results haven't been that bad, especially at home.
They will be particularly supportive if they see the Stoke lads trying to win the ball early and higher up the pitch.
If the fans see the players playing with purpose I'm sure they will warm to that.
I wouldn't change anything in the back four where Geoff Cameron deserves a mention after filling in so well at right-back.
He's got good legs, he's doesn't panic on the ball, likes getting forward and is capable of joining the play.
He's also shown on more than one occasion that he's got a good cross or diagonal pass on him.
I also think he's quickly learning his trade defensively in a position that was new to him.
You can see that Cameron's thinking about his positioning and defensive duties in the middle of matches.
He's starting to sense danger, so important at the back, and he's starting to time his forward runs so as not to leave himself exposed behind.
Listen to Mike Pejic in action on Signal 1 this afternoon during their live coverage of Stoke v QPR.