Celts keen to renew Samaras' contract
CELTIC will step up attempts to renew the contract of Georgios Samaras after tying down fellow striker Anthony Stokes for two more years.
And chief executive Peter Lawwell is looking to secure new deals for Greece forward Samaras and Wales midfielder Joe Ledley, whose contracts both expire at the end of the season.
Lawwell said: "We are meeting Samaras' agent next week. Ledley we are in constant discussions, we are to-ing and fro-ing on that."
Swedish defender Mikael Lustig is also in the frame for a new contract while Lawwell is relaxed about Kris Commons' situation.
"We haven't done anything on Kris," Lawwell said. "He has a year and a half to go and I think he is quite happy with that.
"Mikael has a year and a half to go and we are hoping to start conversations with his people as well. He has been fantastic, a great buy, a great find and he has done really well for us."
IRISH GIRLS FLYING
THE Republic of Ireland's excellent start to their FIFA Women's World Cup campaign continued yesterday when Sue Ronan's side beat Slovenia 3-0 in the Ob Jezeru Stadium in Velenje.
The Irish got off to the best possible start when striker Fiona O'Sullivan turned home an Áine O'Gorman cross after 12 minutes to open the scoring.
O'Sullivan then turned provider in the 42nd minute to set up O'Gorman for the side's second and Denise O'Sullivan made it 3-0 a minute after half-time following an assist by Julie Ann Russell.
The win means the Irish now have seven points from their opening three games and have finished 2013 with just one defeat from eight games.
Their next game in the group will be at home to European champions Germany on April 5.