Glenn Whelan: 'Mean' Stoke City must front up with some goals
GLENN Whelan says Stoke can't just rely on their Mean Machine defence if they are to make the most of their back-to-back home games.
The Potters have struggled to create chances this season, although were much better when they dominated the first half of Monday night's 1-1 draw at West Ham.
The result lifted City to 14th, four points clear of the relegation zone ahead of home games against Fulham, on Saturday, and Newcastle, next Wednesday.
Stoke have the second best defensive record in the league, having conceded just 11 goals in their 12 games.
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However, they are also the fourth lowest scorers having netted just 10.
Whelan says it's up to the players to give lone striker Peter Crouch some help.
He said: "The manager hates conceding goals and that has always been a big part of things at Stoke.
"But on the other side of things, we do have to give Crouchy a bit more help; he can't be feeding off scraps all the time.
"It's up to us, the wide men and the midfielders to give Crouchy a dig out."
Stoke should go into the games with some confidence as they are unbeaten at the Britannia Stadium this season, despite facing Champions League sides Arsenal and Manchester City.
Whelan added: "It is important we get these results. We were disappointed with how we lost at Norwich, but it was a good point at West Ham and hopefully we'll get two results at home now and push on before Christmas."
Whelan came off for the final half-hour at Upton Park as he is short of match fitness.
However, he should be available for the Fulham game.
He explained: "I came off last week when I played for Ireland because I had a little niggle. but I'm fine. I'll be training away during the week and will hopefully be in the team on Saturday."
Walters' City verdict: Page 45