Swansea skipper Garry Monk felt his side provided the perfect answer to their critics in their 2-0 win over Stoke City at the Liberty Stadium.
The Swans are renowned for their passing football but many thought they would struggle to match Stoke's physical approach to the game.
However, Brendan Rodgers' men more than matched their opponents and battled to a deserved 2-0 victory thanks to goals in each half from Scott Sinclair and Danny Graham.
Monk feels the performance stands them in good stead for the rest of the season.
"I thought we stood up well. To a man we were the better side, we had to deal with their throw-ins and free kicks and we stood up to be counted," Monk told Sky Sports.
"We showed the other side, we played nice football but we can do the ugly bit and knuckle down and show that attitude as well.
"Stoke has to be benchmark for ourselves, they are established in the Premier League now and basically shown us how to stabilise the club.
"We want to try to emulate that, not maybe so much on the field in terms of style but how they conduct themselves as a club.
"This is another step forward to us and to win these sort of games especially at home is very pleasing."
Swansea record signing Graham was delighted to have finally got off the mark and denied he ever felt pressure to open his Swans account.
"No I haven't [felt pressure].The players and fans have been superb and everyone around me had backed me. I knew the goal would come and that's gone now but the most important thing was the three points," the former Watford man told Sky Sports.
"It was obviously difficult, every one of their guys is over six foot and they like to get the ball in the box from wide areas and I thought we dealt with that ever so well and when we had the chance to play football we did and we caused them problems.
"It is going to be tough, there's good teams in this league and we need to turn this stadium into a fortress.
"We did that today, the defence looked solid and it's up to us guys in the final third to get goals and we have been doing that in the past couple of weeks."