Anthony Stokes remains in Hibs exile for today’s trip to Celtic Park, with manager Neil Lennon hinting that a parting of ways between player and club is likely to be confirmed over the coming week.
The Irish striker, who incurred Lennon’s wrath following a training-ground incident last month, has been left out of his team’s last two matches against Hearts and Dundee after once again falling foul of club management when he broke a curfew at the squad’s warm-weather training camp in Portugal earlier this month.
Lennon, as he has been over the past fortnight, remained coy on the situation although he revealed that there has been interest in Stokes and, with the transfer window closing on Wednesday, he is hopeful of a resolution to the situation in the coming days.
“He’s not in contention for Celtic,” said Lennon. “There’s been one or two enquiries but nothing definite. I’d hope to draw a line under it as soon as possible. He knows the position and my position on it. Hopefully by the end of the month we’ll have a resolution.”
Lennon also offered an update on the situation of Lithuanian striker Deivydas Matulevicius, who remains at Hibs despite being told early last month he was free to depart if he wished. “We’ve made it clear to Deivydas that he might be best trying to get some football elsewhere but if that doesn’t materialise, we are quite happy to keep him around and involved with the squad,” said the manager. “There have been no concrete offers for him just yet.”
While Stokes and Matulevicius are being lined up for the exit, Florian Kamberi could be on his way in to replenish the attacking department of the squad. The 22-year-old Grasshoppers Zurich centre-forward has been on trial with Hibs this week, and his representative was at East Mains yesterday. “Nothing will be done over the weekend,” said Lennon. “If anything is going to be done one way or the other it will be next week.”