Writer: Ryan Kalisz
Date:Thursday November 24 2011
Stoke long-throw specialist Rory Delap yesterday admitted that the Potters can`t afford another home defeat, especially as Premier League strugglers Blackburn travel down for the cold reception at the Britannia Stadium on Saturday.
The 'fortress Britannia` reputation has somewhat taken a knock with QPR being the latest team out of three consecutive sides to overcome the red and white side on home soil, and it`s certainly rocked the foundations of some fan bases as frustration slowly creeps into the cracks.
Although the atmosphere began so positively loudly against QPR, especially with the first goal of the game coming from a well worked Peter Crouch through-ball to a Village People moustache styled Jon Walters, the equaliser from the Hoops and the continuation to win the game 3-2 silenced the much needed vocal support.
Games haven`t been quite the same atmosphere wise of late, and it`s a shame from the perspective of loud and proud Potters such as myself and many others. But to encourage a crowd, the play must be threatening toward the opposition and their goal, which hasn`t quite been the same either.
Delap recognised that these factors were an issue and told the official site: 'This is a game that if we want to progress, we have to go out and win. QPR and Bolton were both in that category too, but we let ourselves down then and we really don't want to do that again on Saturday.
'The Britannia Stadium has always been something of a fortress for us, and to taste defeat here in three successive games has hurt us.
'We want to get back to how things were before, and rest assured we are working hard to make sure that will be the case at the weekend.'
Promising words by the wise Midfielder, but actions speak louder than words and the team will be judged on their performance against Blackburn. We cannot let another side that arguably we`re on a par with, or even are lesser than us, do us over once more. The fans MUST be in full bellowing voice wherever possible as our influence on the team is key to the motivation and determination of the attacking aspects. Every single one of us has a part to play, so know your role and perform to the best of your ability, for the sake of salvaging our reputation at home, and turning the corner in what has been a poor run of form.
Date:Thursday November 24 2011
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