Stoke City: Marko Arnautovic may follow Bojan's lead over contract

Bojan Krkic (left) helps to celebrate Marko Arnautovic's goal at Anfield in the Capital One Cup semi-final second leg
Bojan Krkic (left) helps to celebrate Marko Arnautovic's goal in the Capital One Cup semi-final second leg - Stoke's first 'victory' at Anfield in almost 57 years

Stoke hope that Austria international winger Marko Arnautovic will follow the example of fellow Potters frontman Bojan Krkic by signing a new contract.

Just a day after persuading Bojan to pen a four-year deal, Potters manager Mark Hughes says it might simply be a case of meeting up with 26-year-old Arnautovic's Austria-based agent.

"They can't just drop everything and come over within an hour," he said.

"It takes planning. That's why it's probably taking longer than it should."

Hughes added: "There's further meetings scheduled. It's ongoing. It's a process you have to go through and it's a bit difficult when they're not based in the UK."

The powerful Arnautovic is enjoying his most successful season since being signed by Hughes for an undisclosed seven-figure fee from Werder Bremen in September 2013.

Set for his 100th appearance for Stoke at Bournemouth on Saturday, eight of his 15 goals for the Potters have come this season.

Arnautovic signed a four-year deal when he first arrived, which ties him to the Britannia Stadium until June 2017.

Coates congratulates Liverpool tickets initiative

Stoke City chairman Peter Coates has told BBC Sport that Liverpool are "to be congratulated" for their rapid response to protests about ticket prices and "listening to supporters".

But he is also keen to point out that his own club are in the vanguard when it comes to keeping football within realistic financial reach of fans, having not raised prices since promotion to the Premier League in 2008.

Stoke already sell the cheapest season ticket in the top flight (£294), while only three other Premier League sides sell cheaper adult matchday tickets - and the club have also funded free away coach travel for all their fans to Premier League fixtures for the past three seasons.

Coates believes that ticket prices have generally been "too high in the modern era", although he would not be drawn on whether he supports the proposed £30 cap on away tickets, which top-flight clubs failed to agree on last week.

But, in an interview with BBC Sport, he said: "There's a willingness and recognition that something needs to be done."

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