Stoke have only lost to the top three teams in the Premier League since early December, whilst compiling nine points from their past three games heading into the sharp end of the season.
Indeed only five teams amassed better points totals from their last half-dozen top-flight sojourns than the 13 Stoke have collected.
It’s mightily impressive stuff from Mark Hughes’ mob, especially after being stripped of Bojan Krkic’s creative powers in January due to injury for the remainder of the campaign.
Sulking is clearly absent from Stoke’s DNA under Hughes’ and now they’ve leapfrogged Swansea into eighth – the Potters’ highest position of the season – it’s conceivable that a top-six finish could even be achieved.
Account holders at bwin.com may perceive the 25/1 about this happening as fanciful at best, though in this form and with many more opportunities to pick points up lying in wait, this price could actually prove to be a humdinger.
With 30 points still up for grabs the gap to Southampton, who are still to make the trip to the Britannia Stadium in mid April, appears infinitely bridgeable.
In the same period Stoke chalked up 13 points, Ronald Koeman’s wobbly Saints have only pinned seven to the board.
More reason for optimism occurs with the visit of Tottenham to the Potteries heading into the final straight, so Hughes’ men can be particularly proactive in reeling the direct competition in.
A trip to Chelsea in early April is certainly a potential bubble-bursting fixture, as is a home duel with Liverpool on the final day, but in between bottom-half dwelling West Brom, Crystal Palace, Sunderland and Burnley are all in the book.
Hughes’ charges have only suffered four defeats at the hands of bottom-half sides all season, while triumphing on eight other occasions.
Daring to dream may not be as brave as it sounds for this Stoke side.
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