Rory Delap has called on Stoke City to keep the current squad together.

Delap, 35, who has just signed a new ­contract, insists skipper Ryan Shawcross, midfielders Salif Diao, Glenn ­Whelan and Dean Whitehead, plus striker Ricardo Fuller, still play key roles.

Delap said: "There are quite a few of us still here from when I first signed and it has played a huge part in our success.

"We have the Stoke spirit. It is not like we do this, that or the other to generate that spirit, it is kind of in our blood.

"Even when the new lads come in, they buy into our work ethic and team spirit and that is why we have been so successful."