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FA Cup fourth round: Mark Hughes insists Stoke City will be prepared for trip to Rochdale

Mark Hughes is confident his Stoke side will not be caught cold in their FA Cup fourth-round tie at against Rochdale on Monday.

The Potters head to Spotland on Monday night just days after returning from warm weather training in Dubai, with Hughes taking his squad to the Middle East for a change of scenery as temperatures across the UK plunged last week.

Returning to the cold to face the Sky Bet League One side in the FA Cup fourth round may come as a shock to the system, but Hughes is unconcerned.

"We are used to the weather in these parts and it won't take us long to get back into it," he said.

"Hopefully, the surface will be okay. We know we've got to go there, face the conditions and get on with it. It won't faze us. We will take the challenge on and make sure we get the job done.

"The training ground here is a little bit wet under foot at the moment and that obviously wasn't the case away, so we got some good work done.

"We've had two days leading into the game on Monday, so the structure of the week works for us.

"The break has done us good. We've just come through Christmas, which takes its toll on everybody. It's key they are able to re-boot for the challenges ahead."

The Welshman is preparing for Rochdale in the same way he would a Barclays Premier League match and insists the cup is important to his side.

"Even against Wrexham in the last round we had something like 10 internationals on the field of play," Hughes added.

"It's a trophy we have a good opportunity to win. But you need a bit of luck in terms of opposition, and in games because sometimes it can hit somebody on the backside and you lose.

"Rochdale are doing well and are highly thought of, so it won't be easy."


Headlines for Stoke City this week

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  • Mark Hughes is confident his Stoke side will not be caught cold in their FA Cup fourth-round tie at against Rochdale on Monday.

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