Darren Fletcher admits the Premier League is unforgiving but feels Stoke can enjoy a decent campaign this season.
The 33-year-old joined the Potters from West Brom during the summer and has played in all four Premier League games this term.
He has been part of one victory, a couple of draws and the solitary loss to Everton on the opening day of the season, with four points taken from games against Arsenal and Manchester United.
The Scotland international has been impressed by how things have gone at the bet365 Stadium and is confident they can enjoy a decent return over the next nine months.
"Three good results and four good performances, even the defeat at Everton was a good performance, and a good cup performance as well," he said.
"Our standards this season have been very high. There’s been challenges we’ve responded to. I think we have improved as the season has gone on and if we can continue to do that we can have a right good season."
However, the veteran midfielder knows that the nature of the league means there will never be a period when the players can rest on their laurels.
"But it doesn’t get any easier," he added. "You go away to Newcastle and then Chelsea at home, it’s a right tough league and you’ve just got to keep yourself going to get yourself up for all these battles."