Date: 15th March 2010 at 9:46am
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Stephen Warnock has praised his fellow defenders after the ‘never say die’ attitude and performance against Stoke.

Speaking on the Official Site this morning Warnock was full of praise for his colleagues as they battled admirably against Rory Delap’s thunderous balls and Stoke’s general aerial threat.

‘It was a hard fought point. We knew it was going to be a battle.’

That it was Mr Warnock, it seems the quoted ‘defence’ after the game are using words like ‘nick’ as a way of describing our chances of scoring but I wouldn’t for a second imply we were set up for the draw given Heskey is receiving praise for his defensive work, but again the performance of those not tasked with keeping a clean sheet aside, a point away at Stoke is a decent result.

From the way they play and the way Pulis makes them frightened of taking points off nobody coming away with a clean sheet shouldn’t be scoffed at – you just wish our attacking prowess again had been more hopeful than ‘nicking’ a goal given we are supposedly in the race for fourth place.

We had 3 games in hand on Liverpool and if we are to mount a serious Top 4 challenge as the season closes we really needed to be looking at at least 6, if not 7 from the 9 available. We are still on track for that, but it makes the next two that much more important.

We cannot afford a slip up and our league form, well attacking play, is hardly inspiring again but we need to up the ante now and go all out to win. If we go into the next games hoping to ‘nick’ it we are going to be sorely disappointed.

‘It makes it (Wigan) a very important game for us, it was important anyway but we wanted three points at Stoke. We want to go to Wigan now and get the right result, get the win and climb that league.’

You’re not alone Stephen, good fighting talk and we know that’s exactly what we’ll get from the defence thesedays – time for others to step up to the plate now and prove they want it badly enough.

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