Imbula excites Stoke boss
Stoke City boss Mark Hughes is excited by what Giannelli Imbula can bring to the team, after netting his first goal for the club.
The France Under-21, born to Congolese parents, joined the Potters for a club-record £18.3 million during the January transfer window, and has already shown glimpses of his finest ability.
Hughes described the midfielder’s performance as “classy”, with the 23-year-old netting his first goal for the club after nine minutes, as Stoke defeated Bournemouth 3-1 at the Vitality Stadium.
“A great strike from Giannelli Imbula, who I thought was great all game today. He has only had two games for us, but has shown quality and class on the ball and so is going to be a big player for us.” Hughes told Sky Sports.
“It is still early days, but it is a lot easier [to settle in] if you are a quality player. He is one of those players who you feel has time on the ball, which has always been a sign of a quality player.
“And he is a player of real ability and stature who we feel will be with us for many years to come. So we are really pleased with what he has produced in the two games he has played for us and we anticipate he will be exactly what we are looking for.
“It is early days, like I said, but he has shown good intent and is prepared to work really hard for the team as well, which he had to do today.”
Imbula, who only joined Portuguese side Porto from Marseille last summer, has become another one of Hughes’ high-profile additions he has brought to the Britannia Stadium, in a new era for the Potters.
It was just Imbula’s second start for the club and this weekends’ long-range strike will have proved to the visiting fans, and the rest of the Premier League, what Stoke’s new man is capable of.