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Goal-shy Mikel scores in Stoke debut


Former Chelsea and Trabzonspor player, John Obi Mikel, scored in his debut for English Championship side, Stoke City.Mikel, who joined manager Michael O’Neil’s side last week as a free agent, got on the score sheet as the Potters overpowered Shrewsbury Town 5-1 in a friendly match that was played behind closed doors. on Tuesday.“John’s been great in his first few days. You can see his quality, there’s no doubt, and people in the group see his quality,” the manager said.
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“He has to get up to speed. He worked very hard on Saturday morning (when we had a game in the afternoon), as did Steven Fletcher and Ryan Shawcross.“I think when you bring a player of that quality in it’s going to improve you and that’s what we’re always looking to do, looking to improve the squad, improve the quality in the squad and John does that,” he told Stoke Sentinel.
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O’Neil hopes, Mikel who arrived at Stoke last week as free agent with 540 appearances for both club and country and a basket full of medals and trophies, will help propel Potters back to the Premier League next season.Stoke finished the 2019-20 Championship season in 15th place, eight points clear of the relegation zone.Mikel, 33,  left Turkish side Trabzonspor in March after he said he did not feel comfortable with top-flight games in the country being played despite the coronavirus pandemic.
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The Nigerian, who joined the Turkish team in 2019, had a contract until May 2020 but left by mutual consent.
“There is more to life than football,” Mikel had said then on Instagram on Saturday.“I do not feel comfortable and don’t want to play football in this situation. Everyone should be home with their families and loved ones in this critical time.“Season should be cancelled as the world is facing such turbulent times.”