Republic of Ireland international Whelan has struggled to cement a place in the starting line-up this season, but came off the bench to great effect to earn a 2-2 draw at Villa Park on Sunday.
Whelan is eager to be playing on a regular basis and is keen for his impact as a substitute against Villa to be rewarded with a starting spot against Bolton on Wednesday.
"Anyone on the bench would rather be on the pitch," Whelan told The Sentinel. "I don't think it's easy watching a game, but if you get a chance, you try to get on and do something.
"Whether it is to maybe change the game, or change the manager's mind for next time.
"I think we have a great squad and a lot of lads who would rather be playing than sitting on the bench, but you have to take your chance when it comes."
Shawcross sorryMeanwhile, Ryan Shawcross hopes his goal against Villa will help to make amends for his recent own goal in the 2-2 draw at home to Portsmouth.
Shawcross, whose 87th minute header gave Stoke hope, said: "Scoring this one is a big boost after the late own goal against Portsmouth. This goal says 'sorry' to the fans.
"It does make up for that equaliser a bit, although I'd got it out of my head before this match.
"As a defender I'm probably going to score another five or six own goals in my career - it's a hazard of the job."