Stoke boss claims singer Tom Jones could block their path to European football

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Mark Hughes has bizarrely suggested that Stoke City’s chances of claiming a Europa League spot have been damaged by iconic singer Tom Jones, with his song Delilah reportedly set to lose the Potters points in the Fair Play League.

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According to the Daily Mirror, the tune – which is sung by the home fans during games at the Britannia Stadium – could be interpreted as promoting domestic violence.

Stoke fans have sung the song since the 1980s but the classic tack could be causing more problems that it’s worth according to Hughes. He told reporters: “Apparently, we get knocked down because the fans have a Tom Jones song. If the crowd are a little bit intimidating, we lose marks.

“It’s unbelievable. But it’s not just the song, it’s when it gets a bit heated here. Plus it’s four of five criteria and small margins, it’s officials, players, crowd.

“If nothing happens, you get six points. But if someone sings Delilah, you get four. Over the course of the year, you’re going to be at the bottom end of the table. I don’t think there’s a problem with them singing it. It’s crazy, from my point of view. The Fair Play table is a waste of time.”

Despite picking up just one point from their last four games, Stoke have enjoyed a solid Premier League season with 43 points from their 32 games, placing them tenth in the current standings, four points adrift of eighth place Swansea City.

They’ll play four of their remaining six games at home, ending with a match against Liverpool at the end of May. They’re next game is against Southampton this Saturday.

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