Stokes explains Charlton choice
By Mark Buckingham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Anthony Stokes admits Premiership football was the factor in his decision to join Charlton.
Anthony Stokes admits Premiership football was the decisive factor in his decision to join Charlton Athletic.
The teenage striker is expected to complete a £3million move to Charlton from Arsenal on Sunday, once he has undergone a medical.
Stokes had spent the first half of the season on loan at Falkirk and scored 16 goals in 18 appearances.
Falkirk wanted to keep the Irish youngster for the rest of the campaign, but Charlton, Celtic and Sunderland all made permanent offers.
Gordon Strachan was surprised that Stokes turned down the chance of playing UEFA Champions League football with Celtic.
But while Stokes was flattered to have the chance to talk to the Scottish champions, and Sunderland, he concedes the lure of the Premiership was too much to resist.
"It was a very, very tough call, but the prospect of playing in the Premiership was what drew me to Charlton," Stokes was quoted in the Sunday Mirror.
"I spoke to Roy Keane and Gordon Strachan and it was a privilege to have those two people interested.
"It's the hardest decision I have ever made."