REPUBLIC OF IRELAND international Jonathan Walters says the Potters are targeting maximum points in their final two fixtures as they aim to complete the task of ending the Barclays Premier League season in the top half of the table.
City take on relegation threatened Fulham in their final home game of the campaign on Saturday knowing a win over the Cottagers could see them leapfrog Newcastle United into ninth position.
Walters admits the clash against the West London side will be no easy task, but insists he is determined to play his part in helping Stoke achieve their first top ten finish since gaining promotion in 2008.
“We are looking in getting two wins in our final two games and our eyes are firmly set on finishing in the top half,” he told Stoke City Player.
“I think for the last three seasons I’ve been here, we’ve come so close to finishing in the top ten but haven’t quite done it, but this season feels different because as a group of player we want to continuously push on and improve.
“Fulham will be a tough game for us. They’re fighting for their lives and they’ve picked up some good results recently, so it’s never an easy game playing against those types of teams.
“We need to be at our best and as I say we have ambitions of our own to cement tenth place.
“We are very confident in front of our own supporters so hopefully we can finish the season off at home in style and get the three points.”
The Potters could equal their best ever Premier League points tally this weekend and have been sitting pretty in tenth position for over seven weeks after recording a memorable victory away at Aston Villa in March.
Since the win at Villa Park, many outside of the Potteries would forgive Mark Hughes’ side for taking it easy but Walters says the Club have always maintained their ambition in achieving their targets for this season.
“I keep hearing people say that we have nothing to play for, but as players we want to prove that we can finish in the top ten and better our best ever points total,” he said.
“In terms of Fulham, we can’t go into the game thinking it’s going to be easy. If we do turn up with that mindset, then we are going to lose the game it’s as simple as that really.
“We will make sure that we work hard in training and prepare ourselves correctly so we are sharp come Saturday afternoon.
“There is always something to play for, whether that is to get back into the side or for players out of contract who are playing for their futures at the football club,” Walters added.
The 30-year-old striker has not started a game for Stoke after scoring and picking up a red card in the draw at Norwich in March.
Walters revealed it has been frustrating watching from the sidelines and admits he is itching to play his part in the squad in the final two games of the season.
“It is very frustrating not to be playing, but that’s also down to the fact the team is performing so well.
“I came on against Cardiff and missed out last weekend against Spurs, so that can be testing when you’re sitting on the bench.
“I’m no different to any other player, I want to play games and help the team out as much as possible.
“I’m certainly eager to get involved and hopefully I will get a chance to help the Club finish this season on a high.