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REPORT: Coventry City 2-1 Stoke City - The Sky Blues have beaten Premier League Stoke City at the Ricoh

The Sky Blues are into the fourth round of the FA Cup...

6 January 2018

Jack Grimmer's second half strike has fired the Sky Blues into the fourth round of the FA Cup as they knock-out Premier League Stoke City.

Jordan Willis gave City the lead midway through the second half after climbing highest to head home Tom Davies' flick-on.

Charlie Adam did draw Stoke level just after half time as the Potters brought Peter Crouch and Xherdan Shaqiri into the frame, but Grimmer's 25-yard strike handed Mark Robins' side the win and progression into the fourth round of the FA Cup.

The visitors threatened to open the scoring inside the first ten minutes. Ramadan Sobhi chipped the ball over the Sky Blues defence for Saido Berahino to fire towards goal but Jordan Willis was able to hook it off the line.

Jordan Maguire-Drew was making his Coventry City debut and impressed fans in the early stages, skipping past Geoff Cameron to play a low cross towards Max Biamou in the area but Kurt Zouma could clear.

Stephen Ireland has not made an appearance for the Potters in over 18 months after fracturing his leg, but came close to marking his return with a goal after 20 minutes. Mame Biram-Diouff brought the ball down in area and layed it off for Ireland to fire just wide.

The game was nicely poised but it would be the Sky Blues who would take the lead midway throught the first half. Biamou did well to win City a corner that new-boy Maguire-Drew would drop into the area where Tom Davies nodded across for Willis to head home at the far post. The Ricoh errupted. Coventry led Premier League Stoke.

Despite the 52 places between the two sides, the Sky Blues were now dominant and missed two golden changes to double their lead before half time. Marc McNulty found himself twice on the end of a Biamou pass to come face to face with England number one, Jack Butand. First he rounded the 24-year-old but found himself at too tight an angle to turn the ball home. Next he took the effort on first time but dragged wide of target. Mark Robins' side could and should have been two goals to the good.

The introduction of Peter Crouch after the break for the visitors gave them an obvious aerial threat, but some nice play down the left drew a foul from Willis in the area giving Charlie Adam the chance to draw his side level from the spot. Which he did. 

The script said that City should now fold and concede defeat, but Grimmer had other ideas when he twisted and unleashed a rocket inside Butland's near post. The noise for Willis' opener was loud, but the celebrations for this one were even louder.

Stoke were now getting desperate. Xherdan Shaqiri entered the frame as the Potters continued to lump balls towards Crouch, but the closest they could come was through Maxim Choupo-Moting, who nearly made the most of a Liam O'Brien mistake but saw his low strike blocked by Chris Stokes.

Yellows: Allen 35', Bayliss 57',


Goals: Willis 24', Adam 54' (pen), Grimmer '68.

Attendance: 14,199.

Coventry City XI: O'Brien (GK); Grimmer, Willis, Davies, Stokes; Maguire-Drew (Stevenson 62'), Doyle (C), Bayliss, Shipley (Haynes 85'); McNulty, Biamou.

Subs: Burge (GK); Hyam, Maycock, Finn, Ponticelli.

Stoke City XI: Butland (GK); Allen, Wimmer, Zouma, Cameron (Crouch 51'), Sobhi, Ireland (Choupo-Mouting 73'), Adam (Shaqiri '74), Edwards, Biram-Diouf, Berahino.

Subs: Grant (GK); Souttar, Afellay, Fletcher.

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