Anthony Stokes, Celtic

Stokes, a farewell tweet at Christmas

The game is almost up for Anthony Stokes and the January transfer window will offer Celtic the chance to offload him permanently down south or out on loan to the Championship in Scotland.

Sadly, for Stokes, it is a tale of unprofessionalism off the field and not good enough on the field in the big games, throughout his Celtic career.

The previous manager, Neil Lennon didn’t rate him enough to play him in big Champions League matches and appearances were never consistent over four and half years.

Stokes has hit an average of 15 goals a season, but you can count on one hand how many have come in European football.

The off-field antics of the 27 year old have caused more of a stir than his striking prowess on it.

This latest outburst from Stokes on social media about being left to sit in the stands at Inverness is the final straw in a career unfulfilled in the hoops.

Coming back late to prepare for a crucial Europa league match against Inter Milan and the stories emerging from Ireland associated with his Father’s pub have all contributed to the negativity towards him from within Celtic.

Now, a Championship club in England or maybe even a League one side could offer Celtic the chance to recoup some of the £1million they paid Hibs back in 2010.

I mentioned a Championship club in Scotland at the start of this article as a short term option for Celtic before selling Stokes in the summer, that possibility could be Hibernian as they look to strengthen their side for the title run-in with Rangers.

Hibs are looking for a striker and former Motherwell hit-man Michael Higdon has been mentioned as a possible target, but Stokes is more mobile and would certainly give them a different option to Keatings, Malonga and Cummings.

However, the share of his weekly wage or indeed all of it could prove to be a stumbling block to a deal being done.

The loss of Stokes would not weaken Celtic’s squad because it has become apparent since Ronny Deila arrived that the Irishman’s attitude and application did not fit with the Norwegian.

Stokes’ departure should be confirmed on social media over the festive period heading towards the new year. Keep your eye out for #leaving on Twitter.

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