Stoke City defeated Arsenal on Saturday despite recording their lowest-ever possession total in a Premier League match.

Jese Rodriguez’s strike 90 seconds into the second half gave Mark Hughes’ men a 1-0 victory at the bet365 Stadium.

Stoke won even though they only had 22.7 per cent of the ball, the lowest tally in their Premier League history.
Arsenal’s 77.3 per cent mark was their highest total in a match since Opta possession records began in the 2003-04 season, but they still fell to defeat.

 

In his remarks, Mark Hughes believes Jese can illuminate the entire Premier League after kicking off life in this country with today’s winner against Arsenal.

The 24 year-old Spaniard, who came close to scoring within three minutes of his English debut, did net 90 seconds into the second half with what proved to be the evening’s only goal.

Jese, who hadn’t trained last week because his newly-born child needed surgery, had only trained on three days with his new Stoke team-mates after signing on a season-long loan from PSG.

“That was a calculated risk,” admitted Hughes after throwing him in from the start.

Jese’s 47th minute winner came after Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka was caught out in possession. Saido Berahino’s link-up play was cool and considered before speeding Spaniard Jese boomed down the inside-right channel to smash his shot past Petr Cech. “1-0 to the rugby team,” sang the mocking Stoke faithful, for whom Jese became an instant hero, having trained just once with his new teammates since joining on loan from Paris Saint-Germain this week.”

 

Arsenal had failed to heed the warnings of a first half in which they dominated possession yet Stoke still created the better chances. Jese went close after his first real burst of action, and captain Ryan Shawcross should have done better with a free header created by a fine run and cross by Maxim Choupo-Moting.

Arsene Wenger’s team had been guilty of that old problem of seeking the perfect goal. Alexandre Lacazette’s link-up play, both long and short, will be an asset to Arsenal this season, but too often there was one pass too many by his teammates. Danny Welbeck at the left-hand post and Aaron Ramsey with a header from Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s free kick were Arsenal’s best first-half chances and Stoke goalkeeper Jack Butland was able to divert both away from danger.