City boss foresaw upturn in Potters fortunes...
GARY ROWETT says that his side’s recent on-field improvements haven’t surprised him in the slightest.
Having endured a difficult start to life back in the Championship, Rowett has steadied the ship somewhat and overseen a much improved sequence of performances and results over the past couple of months.
In fact, since the 3-2 Carabao Cup defeat against Nottingham Forest in September, the Potters have only lost one of the subsequent seven fixtures - conceding just four goals in the process.
Whilst Rowett acknowledges there is still plenty more to come from his side, he admits he has been pleased with the way his players have responded to a lacklustre opening to the campaign.
“When you start the season off by picking up two draws from your first four matches then the reality is that you are going to have to play catch up,” he said at his pre-match press conference this week.
“There were some clubs that picked up nine or 10 points over the same period so we are having to fight against it a little bit and try to claw those sides back within reach.
“When you look at the past 10 games then I think we have been competitive, and when you look at the last six we have been even more competitive."
“You can argue that we have had a poor start but have since shown some real good signs of improvement.
“We were conceding to many goals so we have had to work incredibly hard to rectify that, and maybe the balance has shifted a little somewhat now and we aren’t quite scoring as many as we would like.
“We need to readdress that so that we can defend really well and attack really well, because once we do that then we are obviously going to improve even further.”
He added: “I said after the third or fourth game that we would improve as the season goes on and we are certainly showing that, even though I know we can still get a lot better in all areas of the pitch.”