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Stoke boss Mark Hughes: Rooney can fill Lukaku void at Everton

Stoke City boss Mark Hughes admits they face a tough test meeting Everton.

Hughes is under no illusions that it will be a difficult early test for his team.

"They've brought good players in but lost key players too, like (Romelu) Lukaku. Clearly Wayne Rooney has the ability to fill that space," said Hughes, who had a brief spell at Goodison Park towards the end of his playing career.

"They've got a good side and they've spent money from letting good players go, perhaps similar to Southampton a couple of years ago.

"It's always a close game when we play Everton - a draw and they won by a single goal last season. There is always a turnover of players at this stage and you don't know until you start playing where you are. We are looking forward to getting started."

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Paul Vegas

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