Delap wants more wins

Midfielder wants a return to winning ways at Britannia Stadium

Rory Delap: In happier times when teams feared travelling to Stoke to face his side

Rory Delap is expecting a return to 'business as usual' when struggling Blackburn Rovers arrive at the Britannia Stadium this weekend.

Stoke's normally dependable home form has deserted them in recent weeks with a poor run of three defeats - including one at the hands of Premier League new boys Queens Park Rangers.

But the former Republic of Ireland international is adamant the team can return their home ground to the feared fortress status it has enjoyed over the last few years - starting with Steve Kean's out-of-sorts Rovers.

He said: "With the results we have had just recently, the game against Blackburn is now obviously a bigger game than it was a few weeks ago, and people will want to see how we bounce back.

"Before a ball was kicked this season, you looked at these sort of games and, no disrespect to Blackburn, you would expect us to go out there, put in a performance and get three points.

"That's not being blasé about things because they will be saying exactly the same thing about us when we go to their place - that's just how football is.

"This is a game that if we want to progress, we have to go out and win. Queens Park Rangers and Bolton Wanderers 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.

"It's quite unbelievable really because they are always there behind us, win, lose or draw.

"Maybe after the recent results, they have a right to be out there giving us some abuse because we have underperformed and let them and ourselves down. It's only natural for them to be disappointed."