Hibs set to cut ties with striker Anthony Stokes

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Hibs manager Neil Lennon is remaining tight-lipped on the future of striker Anthony Stokes.

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Anthony Stokes could have played his last game for the club. Picture: Greg Macvean

Anthony Stokes could have played his last game for the club. Picture: Greg Macvean

But it is understood that the player is definitely on the way out of Easter Road following one too many off-the-field indiscretions.

The 29-year-old Irishman, whose goals helped the Leith club to their hoodoo-busting 2016 Scottish Cup final win over Rangers, has tested the patience of his employers with a string of negative headlines throughout his three spells at the club.

In the past he has always been given another chance but it appears his employers have now reached the end of their tether and are looking to offload the frontman as soon as possible.

Speaking at a press conference yesterday, Lennon said he would not discuss the wayward star, who he signed from Blackburn Rovers last August and who still has 16 months of his high-paying contract remaining.

But the suggestion is that the striker, who has scored 11 goals this term, will not feature in the squad for tomorrow’s Scottish Cup fourth-round derby against Hearts at Tynecastle and is being touted to potential suitors.

With Hibs keen to free up money for new signings, Charlton are among those who have expressed an interest, with other enquiries having come from abroad.

Stokes lax approach has caused some disquiet in the dressing room, which has disappointed the club, who brought him in to be an example to the less-experienced players and remunerated him accordingly.

Two months ago Stokes, who is one of the club’s highest paid players, was cut from the squad for a match against Hamilton after a training ground bust-up and this week he was found guilty of driving without a licence. That court ruling came just a week after he breached curfew, along with fellow frontmen Danny Swanson and Martin Boyle during the club’s winter break in Portugal.

All three were disciplined by Lennon, and Swanson looks poised to return to former side St Johnstone after the Hibs boss confirmed that the clubs have been in discussions over a possible deal.

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