Hughes: Draw thoroughly deserved

Mahrez reflects on ”extraordinary” AFCON achievement

Stoke City boss Mark Hughes insists a point will do their confidence a world of good after his side fought back to clinch a 2-2 draw at Tottenham on Saturday.

The Potters needed two late goals from Marko Arnautovic and Mame Diouf to secure a share of the spoils at White Hart Lane after Eric Dier and Nacer Chadli had put Spurs 2-0 up before half-time.

It gave the Staffordshire outfit their first point of the new season, having suffered a 1-0 defeat to Liverpool on the opening day last Sunday, where Philippe Coutinho netted the winner four minutes from time.

Hughes was disappointed to concede twice in the first half against Tottenham, but was delighted with the effort of his players after the break, while hailing Stephen Ireland and Joselu for the impact they made off the bench.

"Stephen Ireland came on and made a real impression in terms of being able to play cute little balls around the box for Joselu and the like," the Welshman told Stoke City Player.

"We really got our reward from that and at 2-2 the only side that looked like they had the capability of winning the game was us.

"It's important for confidence to get our first point early on in the new season, we've been able to do that and we have been pleased with what we have produced in the last two games.

"It hasn't been an easy start with Liverpool and Tottenham but all-in-all we are happy, especially with the performances we have produced in both games."

Hughes added: "We didn't play particularly well in the first half and allowed them a little bit too much time and space to get their technical play going.

"We had to restrict the likes of Dembele and Eriksen and the space they like to play in but we didn't really do that in the opening half.

"At 1-0 you think we could have gone in at half-time and re-group but the second goal was the disappointment because we talk about seeing games through to a conclusion both at the end of halves and the end of games.

"We didn't do that and we gave ourselves a real mountain to climb, but I thought we were excellent the second half. We had a real drive about our game, made a couple substitutions who made a huge impact and created more chances resulting in us getting what we deserved."

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