Stoke's Mark Hughes critical of Leeds United

Mark Hughes Press Conference Disappointed 12/02/2014

Stoke's Mark Hughes critical of Leeds handling of Peter Crouch approach.

Stoke City boss Mark Hughes has criticised Leeds United.

Hughes was unimpressed with the way Evans publicised his loan enquiry to bring striker Peter Crouch to Elland Road, The Times reported.

Quizzed over an approach from Leeds, Hughes responded: "Yes, that would be true to say. Some clubs flag it up and name names. I don’t think that’s correct, to be perfectly honest, but I haven’t had any direct conversation with any manager in regard to Peter.

“Peter’s one who we want to keep here. He’s not long signed a new contract. He came on in midweek and played a part, so we still feel he’s very much a part of what we’re doing here.”

It is telling in terms of Hughes' response, that Leeds' enquiry not getting as far as him personally, immediately rejected presumably upon his instruction to the board that Crouch is a player he wants to keep.

The former England international netted 10 goals last season but has been on the bench more than ever this campaign.

Steve Evans told the Yorkshire Evening Post: "My understanding is that Peter Crouch is not available. It's a similar situation with Jack Grealish."

The Scotsman was simply trying to provide an update with regards to his club's transfer efforts, which so far have been unproductive beyond extending the loan of Liam Bridcutt from Sunderland.

Crouch, 34, is old enough not to be unsettled by the transfer talk, and actually from his perspective it may even have helped re-assure him that Stoke have a need for him, especially given that he has not started a single Premier League game all season.

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