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The Irish midfielder says the former Manchester United man is as good as Alan Shearer, Robbie Fowler and Ruud van Nistelrooy were and is backing him to help improve the Potters

Stoke midfielder Rory Delay has backed the club’s new striker Michael Owen to shine at the Britannia Stadium, and help them step up to the next level.

Owen arrived at the Potters on a free transfer after being released by Manchester United, and Delap is adamant he can help the club prosper in the Premier League.

Delap told The Sentinel: "Michael has been at big clubs all his career and bringing that experience into the dressing room can only help.
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"It's getting that winning mentality that all the big clubs have.

"Teams at the bottom of the table still want to win, of course they do. But it is a case sometimes of working out how to win."

The Irishman rates Owen as one of the best strikers in the history of the Premier League, and believes he will continue to pose a goal threat for the Potters.

"In terms of goalscorers, Michael Owen is up there with Robbie Fowler and Alan Shearer, and I would put Ruud van Nistelrooy into that category as well," he added.

"Shearer could score any type of goal while Owen and Fowler could pop up and nick a goal out of nothing. That sort of natural talent is hard to coach into someone.

"As for Michael Owen, he is so incredibly sharp. You think you are safe and are showing him away from goal, but then he can turn and score from nowhere. There aren't too many players with that ability.

"Also, there was his pace off the mark. He was up to full speed off a couple of strides. He has always been a yard ahead of people with his brain, not just his pace.

"He's a natural goalscorer and players don't lose that. They might lose a yard of pace, but that natural instinct to score goals will still be there."

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