Hughes excited by Oliveira possibility

Stoke City manager Mark Hughes has said he is excited by the prospect of signing Portuguese star Nelson Oliveira from Benfica.

Hughes believes the Potters are moving closer to securing a season-long loan for the 21-year-old striker despite rival interest from French club Rennes.

And he said he anticipated that Oliveira would join up with the rest of the Stoke squad at some stage during their current ten-day pre-season tour of America.

The loan deal for the forward, who has a long-term contract with Benfica, is believed to be worth around £1 million.

Hughes wants to add at least one more signing to his squad, and believes Oliveira would offer a new dimension to the team.

He told the Sentinel: "Yes, there's an interest there. He's a player I've seen before and I know. He's a little bit different to what we've got.

"I'm not sure how far down the line we are, but if we can get him he'll be a good player for us. He's young, but he has played for his country, so he obviously has a good pedigree, and I'm sure we will try and get games out of him straight away."

Oliveira has been loaned out by Benfica on three previous occasions, spending a spell with Deportivo La Coruna last season.

Hughes also seems to have changed his mind over allowing midfielder Wilson Palacios to leave for Hull City this summer.

The Welshman now appears ready to give the Honduran midfielder a chance to prove himself at the club, following two unsuccessful seasons since his £6 million move from Tottenham.

"I've had conversations with Wilson and I'm pleased with what I've seen so far," he said. "I've been pleased with his work on the training ground, and I think he could be a good option for us this year."