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Stoke's Allen enjoying new No.10 role

London, Oct 31 (IANS) Stoke City's Joe Allen says he is relishing the more advanced role that has seen him become an unlikely goalscoring option this season.

The Welshman had traditionally been a more defensive-minded player during his time at previous clubs Swansea and Liverpool, but he has already scored four times in nine English Premier League (EPL) appearances for his current club -- as many as he managed in four years at Anfield.

"I think the biggest change has been the position," Allen told BBC on Monday.

"Obviously things seem to have fallen my way as well but I've been given a much more advanced role here, which means I'm getting myself into more goal-scoring positions.

"We've also got players in this team with creativity, and they've been able to put a few things on a plate for me. I'm obviously not the type of player who will tower over and score headers or be a handful for centre-halves, but there are different ways of picking up goals and they're the type (I've been scoring) recently," he added.

"The way the team has been set up provides a platform for the likes of me, with Marko Arnautovic and Xherdan Shaqiri roaming on the left and right, and that ability to interchange has been one of the reasons it's worked."

Stoke failed to win any of their first seven EPL games of the season, but their recent upturn in form has also seen a dramatic improvement from the likes of Arnautovic and Shaqiri -- the latter of whom scored a stunning brace in the 2-0 win over Hull last weekend.

And Allen believes that his attacking midfield partners are as good as anyone else in the country on their day.

"I had the chance to work at a club like Liverpool, but in both Marko and Shaqiri you've got players who technically are right up there," said the Welshman. "When the pair of them are hot they're as dangerous as anyone in the league.

"It was one of the reasons I was excited to join Stoke, as I looked from the outside at the players they had and thought I could see the team doing a lot of damage as the season went on."

--IANS

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