Hibs’ Scottish Cup Final hero Anthony Stokes has signed for Blackburn Rovers on a three-year deal following his release from Celtic.
Stokes was a surprise loan signing from Celtic in the January transfer window and the Republic of Ireland international justified Alan Stubbs’ faith when he scored twice and was named man of the match in a dramatic 3-2 Scottish Cup final victory against Rangers in May.
The 27-year-old scored 77 goals in 192 games during a successful six-year spell with Celtic where he won four Scottish Premiership titles, two Scottish Cups and the Scottish League Cup.
Rovers manager Owen Coyle, a former Republic of Ireland international forward himself, couldn’t hide his delight at making the former Hibs’ striker his first summer signing.
Coyle told the club website: “I am absolutely delighted to get Anthony Stokes on board
“He had a number of suitors and we had to beat off a lot of competition from some big clubs for his signature. This is a boy who is a proven goalscorer, he’s a had a terrific career at a very high level and we’ve got him at a very good age. At 27, I think he’s coming into his prime.
“He’s coming here hungry and motivated to do well, to continue to his improvement, to score goals and to help Blackburn Rovers be an exciting team.
“Having played in front of 60,000 fans at Celtic, he’s got the mentality to stand up and be counted in big games, as he’s shown over the years, and to get a player of that calibre to the club, we’re absolutely delighted.
“Hopefully it gives all of the Rovers fans a lift and shows that we’re trying to get goalscorers and exciting players to the club that they can enjoy watching.”