Published: Mon, June 20, 2016
Sports | By Nelson Rowe

Blackburn Rovers sign Anthony Stokes

Blackburn Rovers sign Anthony Stokes

After nearly seven years in Scotland with Hibernian and Celtic, Irish worldwide Anthony Stokes has returned to England to join Championship side Blackburn Rovers.

The 27-year-old was then loaned out from January onwards to Hibernian, where he made 14 appearances, finding the net on five occasions, including a brace in the stunning Scottish Cup final win over Rangers.

Rovers manager Owen Coyle, a former Republic of Ireland worldwide forward himself, couldn't hide his delight at making the former Hibs' striker his first summer signing.

"I get a feeling for moves a lot of the time and there were different options available, but this time round this seemed like the right move for me", Stokes told Blackburn website.

The in-demand forward bagged 77 goals in 192 games during his spell at Celtic and Coyle believes Stokes' hunger and "motivation" can help Blackburn become successful.

Stokes played under Alan Stubbs at Hibs and the former Celtic and Everton defender was keen to sign him for his new club Rotherham, but the striker has opted to join the Millers' Sky Bet Championship rivals instead.

Without a recognised goalscorer on Rovers' books when Coyle was appointed manager earlier this month, he admits it was of paramount importance that the club strengthened the striking department as soon as possible, and he hopes that Stokes' signing will be the first of many.

"So I'll need to put in the hard work, try to get a good pre-season under my belt and really kick on this season".

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