Whelan’s Milestone

Whelan celebrate

Glenn Whelan is in line to celebrate his 250th Premier League appearance for Stoke appearance against Everton.

Signed back in 2008, Whelan has become the heartbeat of Stoke’s midfield in recent years.

It took the Irishman a little while to become a regular in the Premier League, but he has been an integral member of Mark Hughes’ team. Tomorrow is set to be his 100th top flight appearance under Hughes.

Not always everybody’s cup of tea, Whelan has grown with age and has arguably been Stoke’s most consistent performer during the Hughes era.

What a snip he was when he joined for just £500,000 from Sheffield Wednesday. Stoke won the first five matches Whelan appeared in, with his first start coming in the memorable 4-2 win at Molineux, and he’s gone on to make more than 300 appearances in a Stoke City shirt.

During his time at the club Whelan has appeared in an FA Cup Final, played in six different countries and also started all but one of last season’s Premier League campaign- underlining his importance to the side despite the influx of ‘bigger’ names.

His reading of the game is excellent and it is incredible how many times during a match he drops back into a defensive position to cover. There can’t be many other Premier League players who drop back so frequently and it’s a priceless unselfish attribute.

Not only has Whelan been integral for Stoke, but he’s also been a huge part of Ireland’s recent history. He is Stoke’s most capped international and boasts more than 70 caps for the Boys in Green.

It’s quite fitting that, as vice-captain, Whelan only trails skipper Ryan Shawcross in Premier League appearances for Stoke. Whelan is just eight short of the defender’s total appearances.

Now 32, Whelan won’t be around forever, but you wouldn’t bet against him knocking on the door of making it to 300 top flight appearances for The Potters.

It has been 1,735 days since Whelan’s last goal for Stoke. Tomorrow would be a lovely day to break that drought…

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