Stoke's Shaqiri backs hard-working Bony to end goal drought
REUTERS - Stoke City midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri is unfazed by Wilfried Bony's dry spell in front of goal this season and has backed the on-loan striker to rediscover his scoring touch.
Ivorian Bony joined Stoke from Manchester City on a season-long loan and is yet to open his tally in the Premier League after making five appearances.
"Of course for a striker it's always good and important to score goals but Wilfried is in a very good way," Shaqiri told the club's website (www.stokecityfc.com).
"I've enjoyed playing with him, he's getting closer and he's getting in the right positions so soon he will score, there's no doubt about that."
Shaqiri said Bony's hard work off the ball and keeping possession have made him a pivotal part of Stoke, who sealed their first league win of the season after easing past Sunderland on Saturday.
"It's not simple for him at times because he works incredibly hard to keep hold of the ball up front. He's a very good guy and he works a lot in the week and in matches," he added.
"He played very well on Saturday. He's an important part of the team and he helped us win the game. That's the main thing, winning games, but I am sure that once he gets his first then he will go on to get plenty of goals this season."
The 27-year-old Bony was a bit-part player for City last season, scoring four league goals in 26 games.
(Reporting by Ian Rodricks in Bengaluru)