Stoke City have completed the permanent signing of midfielder Stefan Ireland, who has been on loan at the club since the start of the season. Ireland had fallen out of favour with Villa boss Paul Lambert, which led to his loan move to Stoke.
He has always enjoyed a great relationship with Stoke boss Mark Hughes even from his days at Manchester City. This has led to Ireland enjoying football after a long time. Stoke also have been able to take advantage of a very creative midfielder, who has not been playing regularly in the last few years.
Ireland has been one of the better player for the club in an otherwise dull campaign. It is expected that the Republic of Ireland midfielder will be at the centre of everything Stoke do in the coming few years. Hughes has been trying to bring in an attractive style of football to the club, while Ireland is one of the players who can provide it with his level of technical ability. He has made 16 appearances for the club in all competitions this season, while the 27-year-old has signed a long-term contract according to the club’s official site.
Hughes announced that it also great news for the club, as Ireland is someone who can bring a lot of quality to the team.
“Stephen is a talented footballer and has shown what he’s capable of since he joined us. We’re delighted to have made his switch a permanent arrangement as it also gives us the opportunity to bring in another player on loan,” said Hughes. The midfielder has scored three goals this campaign, but he will be hoping for a much better tally in front of goal given his talent. He has formed a great partnership with Peter Crouch up front and things are looking on the up for the club.