Shawcross hails Allen quality ahead of Liverpool tie

Stoke City captain Ryan Shawcross has revealed how surprised he was that Liverpool sold Joe Allen to the Potters.

Allen has quickly become a star player for Stoke since he was deemed surplus to requirements by Reds manager Jurgen Klopp and sold for 13 million pounds.

Shawcross is delighted to have Allen in the team and hopes he will have another strong showing when he faces his former club at Anfield on Tuesday.

"He probably never knew he was going to join Stoke. I thought Liverpool would have kept him and when I heard we were going to get him, I was surprised," Shawcross told the British press.

"For the amount of money as well, it's a great signing for the club. He's an even better player than I thought. I've always rated him but I didn't realise he was so good. He's been our best player this season, our catalyst."

"He's our main player. Hopefully he can put a good performance in, as the team can. I'm sure he'll be desperate to prove the manager wrong," he added.