Bowen optimistic away form can continue

Stoke City assistant manager Mark Bowen hopes the club can continue their strong away form when they visit Sunderland in the League Cup.

Since making their Premier League debut in the 2008-09 season, Stoke have had a notoriously poor away record in the top flight. 

However, Mark Hughes' side have not lost any of their three away league games so far this season - including a shock 1-0 victory at champions Manchester City earlier this month. 

Stoke were only denied another win on the road at the weekend as Niko Krancjar's stunning 88th-minute free-kick earned QPR a 2-2 draw.

And Bowen wants the team to take their Premier League form away from home into Tuesday's League Cup tie at the Stadium of Light.

"Our away form has improved however so we can take positives going forward and hopefully into tomorrow night's game," Hughes' deputy said in a press conference on Monday.

"We are quite confident with our away form going forward. We will go to Sunderland with a positive outlook to try and win the game.

"We are pleased with our form away from home so far this season and how we finished the last.

"We now have the pace and firepower which we didn't quite have last season so we will go to Sunderland in good spirits.

"We have watched Sunderland a couple of times. They have had a similar start to us with a slow start at home but you only have to look at the players they have available to know it will be a tough game tomorrow night."

Bowen revealed there could be "one or two" changes from Saturday's game at Loftus Road, although Jonathan Walters is not yet fit after missing that outing with a calf problem.