Footballer Anthony Stokes has escaped being sent to prison after beating up an Elvis impersonator in a Dublin nightclub.

The Blackburn Rovers striker left his victim, Anthony Bradley, with a suspected broken nose and two chipped teeth after headbutting him on a night out in his home town in June 2013

The attack, at Buck Whaleys in Leeson Street, came just hours after the Republic of Ireland's 3-0 World Cup qualifier win over the Faroe Islands.

Stokes, 28, who spent six years playing for Celtic, pleaded guilty to the assault in November and was given a two-year suspended sentence at Dublin's circuit criminal court on Wednesday (1 February).

He was also ordered by Judge Patricia Ryan to sign a bond to be on good behaviour for two years.

Stokes, who has won nine caps for Ireland, is to pay his victim €30,000 (£25,500, $32,300).

A previous hearing had seen a judge warn Stokes: "I don't think it is a minor offence."

The footballer joined Championship side Blackburn Rovers last year but began his senior career with a two-year spell at Premier League club Arsenal in 2005.

He went on to play for Sunderland, Sheffield United and Crystal Palace before spending six years with Celtic, where he enjoyed more than 130 appearances.

elvis
Anthony Stokes attacked an Elvis impersonator, like the one pictured, in June 2013 Getty