Stokes: We deserve more credit

Celtic striker Anthony Stokes claims memories of the Bhoys’ incredible European achievements have already begun to fade in the minds of their critics.

The Irish frontman suggested Neil Lennon’s Clydesdale Bank Premier League champions have not received their fair share of credit this term.

The Hoops stunned European football when they toppled Barcelona in Glasgow in the Champions League group stage on their way to the competition’s round of 16.

They were knocked out by Juventus following a 5-0 aggregate defeat but recovered to wrap up their second successive SPL title.

But just seven wins from their final 13 league fixtures left the club open to criticism as some suggested Lennon’s men had stumbled across the line.

Stokes, however, insists the club can be proud of their exploits as they chase the domestic double in Sunday’s William Hill Scottish Cup final against his former club Hibernian.

He said: “Have we got the credit we deserve? I don’t know. When we were doing really well in Europe, everyone was talking about us being a great young side. But when you tail off with three or four games left, people tend to have short memories.

“We will look back on it as a great season with a great run in Europe. We won the league fairly comfortably and our main aim now is the double.”

Celtic wrapped up the SPL with five games to go and Stokes says back-to-back four-goal wins over St Johnstone and Dundee United in their final two SPL fixtures proves they have now got over their slump.

“The league is the main aim year after year — it’s the big one,” he said. “I think we deserve the double this year.”

Stokes is out of contract this summer but has not given up hope of penning a new deal. His representatives have held discussions with the club and the player is confident a new agreement will be struck soon.

He said: “It’s going on at the minute now and there are contracts getting sorted out. I’m confident enough it will be signed.”


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