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ENGLISH EYES ON STOKES

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CELTIC’S frozen-out striker Anthony Stokes is wanted by Championship side Sheffield Wednesday.

And that will be bad news for his former Hoops team-mate Gary Caldwell who was hoping to lure the Republic of Ireland international to Wigan.

Stokes, who turned 27 yesterday, has fallen down the pecking order at Parkhead with the £1.3million arrival of Nadir Ciftci from Dundee United.

Ronny Deila is keen to move on some of the fringe players and the ex-Hibs and Sunderland frontman is likely to be among those heading for the exit.

Neil Lennon has been linked with an interest in the player he paid £1million for in August 2010, but the Bolton manager admits he has little to spend. Newly-relegated Hull City, too, have monitored his situation, but the Hillsborough side look to be in pole position.

Wednesday have just appointed Carlos Carvalhal, former Head Coach of Portuguese giants Sporting Lisbon, as boss and he has been promised transfer funds by the club’s new owner, Thai businessman Dejphon Chansiri.

The Yorkshire outfit are pushing for a top six finish in the new season and are desperate for a consistent goalscorer.

Ironically, they have also been linked with former Celt Gary Hooper, who could be heading for the exit at Norwich City.

Ex-Hoops skipper Caldwell, appointed manager at Wigan near the end of last season’s disastrous campaign, is keen on Stokes, but it is unlikely the frontman would be willing to play in the English third tier.

The Dublin-born forward has netted 72 goals for the SPFL champions since his arrival almost five years ago, but he struggled to impress Deila last term and claimed only seven strikes from 21 appearances.

Stokes still has two years of his contract to run, but the Hoops may be prepared to let him leave for a fee of around the £1million mark.

 
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