What a difference a week makes – as Rovers made it nine points from three games with victory at Stoke City.

Sam Gallagher came off the bench to score the winner with five minutes to play after Bradley Dack scored his 10th of the campaign in the first half.

Dack put through his own net, as Stoke pressed hard in the second half, with Rovers having to do more than their fair share of defending.

Marshalled by captain Darragh Lenihan, Rovers repelled much of what the hosts had to throw at them, and the celebratory scenes at the final whistle came as they moved in to the top half of the Championship.

Tony Mowbray stuck with the side that had beaten Brentford three days earlier, with Sam Gallagher shaking off a hamstring injury to return on the bench.

Stoke brought in former Burnley striker Sam Vokes and were looking for his aerial threat at every possible opportunity. A fourth minute diagonal was knocked down by the Welshman in to the path of Tom Ince, whose shot from the edge of the box was palmed away by Christian Walton.

Rovers were growing in to the game though, moving the ball out nicely, with Stoke happy to sit off. Armstrong couldn’t make the most of one opportunity when racing in behind, but from another, he won Rovers a corner which would bring them the opening goal. Stewart Downing’s corner was met by Darragh Lenihan, and after his header and Tosin Adarabioyo’s follow-up were blocked, Dack was on hand to turn home his 10th of the season.

It was just what they deserved for a positive opening that had seen Armstrong shoot too close to Jack Butland.

Stoke kept looking to Vokes to provide them with some forward momentum, but Rovers were comfortable, a little too, as they began to drop the tempo of their play.

That invited the hosts on a touch, though their lack of quality from the wide areas was halting any chance of them creating an opportunity to test Walton.

Joe Allen ballooned a shot over from 25 yards, but as the crosses kept coming, Rovers’ defending was being tested.

Corry Evans twice showed good anticipation to clear crosses in to the box, with Sam Clucas heading another wide in what was a forgetting 45 minutes in front of goal for the hosts.

The anticipated Stoke improvement arrived as the players emerged from the half-time break, twice going close to an equaliser within five minutes of the re-start.

Ince took aim from 25 yards, after space opened up for him, with his effort inches wide of the top corner. And Walton’s first save of note arrived in the 50th minute, diving to his left to deny a Vokes header from a McLean cross.

With Armstrong struggling with a knock, and having lacked an impact, Rovers sent on Elliott Bennett to play in front of Ryan Nyambe.

After Sam Gallagher replaced Danny Graham, Stoke made a double change and with it went 4-4-2.

Rovers had offered little threat going forward, and were doing much of the defending, getting numbers in and around the ball to block shots and cross where possible.

Clucas volleyed wide after Vokes had seen one shot blocked, while Stoke thought they had a decent shout for a penalty when McLean’s cross looked to hit the hand of the sliding Lenihan.

A rare sight of goal saw Evans shoot straight at Butland, but they remained on the back foot, with plenty of defending to do from direct balls forward.

The pressure was all Stoke’s though and they had an excellent chance to level with 11 minutes to play. Subs Hogan and Diouf linked up, and as Downing raced to get back, the former Rovers loanee had his first shot saved by Walton and the follow-up cleared off the line by Lenihan.

The leveller wasn’t long in the waiting, however. The hosts kept applying the pressure and forced the ball over the line from a right wing inswinging corner, with Dack looking to get the final touch.

That gave the home fans all they needed to get behind the side with thoughts turning the possibility of finding a winner.

And Rovers were able to hold out, seeing the game out without too many alarms to sign off November in fine fashion.

Stoke: Butland, Carter-Vickers, Batth, Martins Indi, Ward (Powell, 78) Woods (Hogan, 63), Clucas, Allen, Ince (Diouf, 63), McLean, Vokes

Subs: Federici, Edwards, Gregory, Ndiaye

Rovers: Walton, Nyambe, Lenihan, Adarabioyo, Downing, Travis, Evans, Armstrong (Bennett, 52), Dack, Rothwell (Holtby, 72), Graham (Gallagher, 60)

Subs: Leutwiler, Bell, Johnson, Brereton