The Irish midfielder completed a deadline day loan move from Aston Villa to the Britannia Stadium, where he will link up with former boss Mark Hughes – whom he worked with at Manchester City.
The 27-year-old has struggled for playing time over the course of the past few seasons at Villa Park, which has seen his career stagnate.
Now, Ireland is thrilled to be facing the prospect of regular football and cannot wait to get going.
“I had a great relationship with Mark at Manchester City and I was desperate to work with him and his staff again,” he told the club’s official website.
“I’m raring to go and can’t wait to meet my new team-mates.
“Mark knows how I play and how to get the best out of me. I just want to get a good run of games, which is something I haven’t had for a while.
“I’m so grateful to Stoke City for the opportunity – I’m looking forward to getting stuck into training and building my career back up again.”
The move capped a successful transfer window for the Potters, who have strengthened significantly under Hughes.
‘Sparky’ has secured deals for the likes of Erik Pieters, Marc Muniesa, Jermaine Pennant, Oussama Assaidi and Marko Arnauovic in a bid to impose his own playing style on his inherited squad.
Can Stephen get his career back on track at Stoke?
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