Gary Rowett welcomes ‘gift from heaven’ after controversial Joe Allen winner

Stoke boss Gary Rowett admitted his side had been handed a “gift from heaven” as they edged Swansea 1-0 thanks to a disputed Joe Allen goal.

Allen’s first goal since January secured the Potters only their second win in eight Sky Bet Championship outings this season.

But replays proved that the Wales midfielder was offside as he scored against his former club.

“It was a gift from heaven,” admitted Rowett. “But you take what you’re given sometimes.

“It was offside, so we’ve had a bit of fortune.

“Having watched it back, it was definitely offside. But even if you discount the goal, we’ve had the three of the clearest chances in the game.

“We started to create some good opportunities late on – and it was much better.

“But certainly the goal gave us a nice platform at a good time because maybe our play hadn’t been quite good enough to get the lead.”

Victory secured Stoke their first back-to-back home league wins since March 2017.

Rowett added: “There’s a bit of relief (with the win) because we started very edgily and moved the ball a bit too slowly to start with.

“But I thought we finished the game stronger. Swansea came here to nullify us and it was difficult to play the game we wanted too, but we kept our heads and we had a bit of good fortune. It was a fair result.

“And Joe will be pleased to have scored against his old club.

Allen, speaking to Sky Sports, said: “I thought I was offside.

“It wasn’t a case of not celebrating (against my old club), it was more relief than excitement to be honest.

“I’m just glad to have got it – and luckily it was the goal that won us the game.

“We needed that win. Hopefully that will really kick our season on and get a bit of momentum.”

Swansea manager Graham Potter was left frustrated after his side drew a blank against his former club, but refused to blame the officials for not disallowing Allen’s second-half winner.

“It felt strange at the time and seeing it back it’s an obvious one,” Potter said.

“But it’s part of football and these mistakes happen. I won’t be the first guy to moan about an offside decision.

“From our perspective we look to what we can do a little bit better.

“We could have created more chances than we did, but we’ll probably play a lot worse and pick up points.

“It would have been nice to win here, but it’s nice to come back. I would have preferred to go home with three points though.

“However, we showed a great attitude and spirit, we showed a lot of character.

“I’m disappointed to lose because we put a hell of a lot into the game.”

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Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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