Search icon


22nd Jan 2016

Anthony Stokes is confident of reclaiming Ireland place with loan move to Hibs

Comeback is on

Darragh Murphy

Time is running out for players to make a case for a seat on the plane to France.

There are certainties, in terms of options up front, who will be on the flight such as Shane Long, Daryl Murphy and Jon Walters.

Then there are the maybes which include Simon Cox, Adam Rooney and a certain Anthony Stokes.

After a lack of playing time at Celtic and a few run-ins with manager Ronny Deila, Stokes was loaned out to Scottish Championship side Hibernian this week but is hopeful that his showings in the second half of the season can convince Martin O’Neill to take a chance on him this summer.

Anthony Stokes 19/11/2013

“Of course I can win my Ireland place back,” Stokes said. “It’s down to me to put in the performances that will take me there and work on my fitness to get it back up to 100 per cent.

“I need to kick on and do my talking on the pitch. I don’t see any reason why I can’t win my place back.

“I haven’t spoken to Martin in the last while and there’s been no assurances. I just want to go out, perform and get my fitness levels up. I haven’t played consistently for five or six months now so I just want to get back into things.”

Celtic v Ross County - Scottish Premiership

Stokes has nine Ireland caps to his name but has somewhat seen his international career fall by the wayside in recent years due in no small part to his sporadic appearances for his club.

But the 27 year old Dubliner remains hopeful of not only resurrecting his Ireland hopes, but also reviving his Celtic career.

“My future is still at Celtic,” he said. “There is an option there for me to go back and I’ve got another year left on my contract.

“That is my plan. I had a brief conversation with Peter (Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell) and I told him in no uncertain terms I want to go back at the end of the season.

Dundee United v Celtic - Scottish League Cup Final

“I just hope I can get myself in the best shape possible, put in some performances and go back a better player.

“My relationship with the gaffer is absolutely fine. There has been no issue in the background. I haven’t really had a look in this season but it is what it is.

“It’s easy to start saying things on Twitter but that was down to frustration. I apologised for it, I retracted it. There’s nothing I can do now other than move on.”

WATCH: Liverpool BOTTLED the title race 🤬 | Who will win the Premier League?