Argyle v Stoke City. Home Park. Saturday, 2 December. 3pm. Sky Bet Championship.
Stoke are 17th in the Championship table coming into Saturday's game. They have 21 points from 18 games. They have won six, drawn three and lost nine. This puts them three places and two points ahead of Argyle.
Stoke's form has had its peaks and troughs this season. They won two of their first three games, beating Rotherham United and Watford, but then got just four points from seven games, including a win against Bristol City.
At the end of October, the Potters won three games in a week, beating Sunderland, Leeds United and Middlesbrough - all sides currently in the top ten in the division. They followed with goalless draws with Cardiff City and Coventry City, then a 3-0 home loss to Blackburn Rovers. Most recently, Stoke were 2-0 up at Queens Park Rangers, but lost 4-2, having had Enda Stevens sent of when they were 1-0 up.
After a playing career in which he represented Airdrie, Barnsley and Mansfield Town, Alex Neil's final club was Hamilton Academical, who he would go on to become the player-manager of, aged 31. His success there, taking Hamilton up to the Scottish Premier League, drew the attention of Norwich City, who Neil joined in January 2015.
At Carrow Road, he took Norwich to promotion to the Premier League via the Championship play-offs, but the Canaries were relegated the following season. With the club eighth the season after that, Neil was sacked.
His next job was with Preston North End, where he spent nearly four seasons, finishing in positions ranging from seventh to 14th. In February 2022, he was given the task of steering Sunderland to the play-offs and then into the Championship, which he achieved.
He chose to leave the Stadium of Light to join Stoke that summer. Last season, he took the Potters to 16th place.
Stoke's leading goalscorer this season is Andre Vidigal, who has four league goals, and one in cup action. Typically playing up front or wide on the left, Vidigal signed from Maritime in his native Portugal, having begun his career at Academica, also in Portugal, and having a spell with Fortuna Sittard in the Netherlands.
Ben Pearson (below) has started 15 of Stoke's games this season, in the heart of the Potters' midfield. The 28-year-old came through the ranks at Manchester United, and had a season on loan at Barnsley, before moving to Preston North End, where he was managed by Alex Neil. He played 165 times for PNE, then moved on to Bournemouth, where he played 55 times over three seasons. He spent some of last season on loan at Stoke, then signed permanently in the summer.
Enda Stevens was sent off in Stoke's last game, so misses the trip to Home Park through suspension. Wouter Burger and Daniel Johnson were booked in that game, taking them to five cautions, and they will also be suspended for Saturday.
Fancy a Stat?
Argyle's record defeat came at the hands of Stoke City. The Potters beat Argyle 9-0 at the Victoria Ground in December 1960.
Argyle and Stoke have met 45 times in the clubs' histories. The Greens have won 12 of those games, Stoke have won 20 and there have been 13 draws.
The most recent meetings came in the 2007/08 season. The sides drew 2-2 at Home Park, with the game at Stoke earlier in the season ending in a 3-2 win for the Potters.
The game is sold out for Argyle supporters.
If you have a season ticket and cannot attend, you can make your ticket available via the Ticket Exchange and receive face value credit if your ticket is resold. Find out more about the Ticket Exchange.
The game is a dedicated Project 35 fixture. For more information on this and other matters to enhance your match-day experience, see our Fans' Guide.
Commentary for the game will be provided by Charlie Price and Aaron Cusack.
Argyle TV’s pre-match show, hosted by Alex Wood and Katie Middleton, will begin at 2pm, and is available to watch for free on YouTube.
Domestic supporters can listen to audio commentary on Argyle TV, while international supporters can buy a match pass to watch the game, here.