Glenn Whelan is determined to prove the doubters wrong and help keep Stoke in the Premier League.
The Potters are widely expected to struggle in the top flight this season after winning promotion from the Championship.
However, Whelan does not believe Stoke should be written off just yet and has revealed that spirits are high in the camp.
"There's definitely a determination to prove people wrong," he said.
"Obviously the media expect us to go down, but if you don't believe you can do better than that, you've already lost.
"There's nothing we can do about what people say in the newspapers and on TV. We can only control what happens on the field, and as a squad we are going into the season thinking we can do a lot better than people are making out.
"Obviously we have to prove that before we can start changing the media's minds, but we're confident that we can."
Dave Kitson, Seyi Olofinjana and Thomas Sorensen have all arrived at the Britannia Stadium this summer and manager Tony Pulis is looking to bolster his squad further before the close of the transfer window.
Whelan feels the increased competition for places can only benefit Stoke's chances of survival, and the former Sheffield Wednesday midfielder is looking forward to the challenge of fighting for a starting spot.
"The new lads are obviously coming in to try and get into the team, so that spurs you on." he said.
"You know that if you're not playing well you won't get in the side, and when you see the manager spending money on players, it just makes you more determined to improve your own game.
"I'm prepared to get my head down and work hard for a starting place, and if I am given the chance I know I'll have to play well to stay there."
Sorensen, who is expected to start in goal against Bolton on Saturday, thinks it is vital for Stoke to get off to a flyer.
"It's always nice to get off to a good start," said the former Aston Villa man.
"Everyone knows how important confidence is in this game, so if we can get off to a winning start we can build on that in the games to come.
"If we look at the table on Saturday night and see ourselves with three points it will give a great buzz to everyone.
"We need all the points that we can get so if we get them early it takes the pressure off."