What Ramadan Sobhi needs to do to cement his place in Stoke City’s plans

Ramadan Sobhi

Ramadan Sobhi is starting to prove his worth at Stoke City after a slow start to his career in the Potteries.

Having moved to Stoke from Egyptian side Al Ahly last summer, Mark Hughes has carefully managed the youngster and his approach is now paying off.

Supporters in his homeland had expected the 19-year-old, nicknamed “Ramadona”, to make an instant impact.

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But it is only since his return for the African Cup of Nations that the teenager has become a regular starter as injuries have taken their toll on the City squad.

He has been able to fill in the boots of Xherdan Shaqiri and Marko Arnautovic but remains very much a work in progress.

Hughes must work on two particular aspects of Sobhi’s game and we’ve taken a look at where he can develop and better suit the Premier League.

Decision-making

First and foremost, his dribbling skills are outrageous, but he should know when to dribble and when to pass.

His decision-making has been poor in some situations in the matches and this has led to a loss of possession.

Adama Traore, the Middleborough winger, is built like a small tank and has got spectacular dribbling skills – but he’s got the same.

Traore can dribble past defenders easily but the problem is his end product.

It’s a joy to watch Ramadona play but Stoke’s coaching staff must drill into him the importance of playing the percentages in the final third.

Physicality

The Premier League is known to be the most physical league in the top five leagues in Europe.

In one-on-one situations, Sobhi can lose the ball due to a lack of physicality despite making some strides in this area already.

Gerard Deulofeu, who is now on loan from Everton to AC Milan, is a prime example of a great player whose frame is not suited to English football.

He’s thriving under Vincenzo Montella in Italy as he is given more time on the ball and subject to less blood and thunder challenges.

Hitting the gym is the only way forward for Sobhi if he is to find his feet in the Premier League.

If Ramadona irons out these flaws in his game then he can develop into a world-class talent – but it requires hard work on his part and patience from Stoke’s fans.

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