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Celtic could keep Georgios Samaras despite Hercules bid

Celtic striker Georgios Samaras

Samaras hitting the net for Celtic

Georgios Samaras' pre-season form could lead Celtic manager Neil Lennon to have second thoughts about offloading the striker - despite a bid from Hercules.

The Greece forward has scored twice on Celtic's North American tour - in a 3-1 defeat by Manchester United then Sunday's 2-1 win over Seattle Sounders.

"Hercules have put a bid in for him, but I don't know how much or how concrete it is," said Lennon.

"He's a bit of an enigma and has certainly given us food for thought."

Samaras appeared likely to exit Celtic after Lennon recruited striker Daryl Murphy from Sunderland this summer.

We'll contemplate what we are going to do over the next few days

Celtic manager Neil Lennon

The Greek has a year left of his contract, with the Glasgow club risking losing him for nothing next summer should he remain at Celtic Park.

And Alicante-based Hercules have targeted the 25-year-old, who joined Celtic from Manchester City in 2008, after their promotion to La Liga.

"We'll contemplate what we are going to do over the next few days," said Lennon.

"But he is one of those players with a year to go on his contract, so maybe we'll wait until we get back and see where we go with it."

Hercules have ended a 13-year absence from Spain's top flight and coach Esteban Vigo believes he needs another striker.

"We think Samaras can solve our problems in attack," he said of the man who played for his country at this summer's World Cup finals.

The Greek, who was a substitute against United, had started the match this time along with Morten Rasmussen, with Paddy McCourt operating behind the strikers and forward Cillian Sheridan playing in an unfamiliar left-back position.

Seattle goalkeeper Terry Boss hauls down Georgios Samaras
Goalkeeper Boss was sent off for fouling Samaras

Samaras, who had scored against the English side on Friday from the penalty spot, did so again against Seattle after he himself was brought down by goalkeeper Terry Boss on the half-hour mark.

The Major League Soccer side were reduced to 10 men as Boss was shown a red card and Milan Misun set up McCourt to stroke home the second after the break.

A long-range drive from David Estrada pulled a goal back and the striker sent another effort off a post, but Celtic held on for their first victory of their North American tour.

The Glasgow side, who lost their opener 1-0 to Philadelphia Union, now head to Boston, where they will face Sporting Lisbon.

Lennon said there were some minor injury concerns over defenders Glenn Loovens and Thomas Rogne and midfielders Scott Brown and Joe Ledley, but all are expected to be fit for next week's Champions League opener against Sporting Braga.

However, new signing Efrain Juarez is set to miss out though after returning to Mexico to arrange a visa after completing a medical with Celtic in Seattle ahead of his move to Glasgow.



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see also
Hull boss says Bullard should go
19 Jul 10 |  Hull
Celtic offer McCourt new contract
19 Jul 10 |  Celtic
Celtic given Juarez permit boost
17 Jul 10 |  Celtic
Ledley laments Cardiff's failure
17 Jul 10 |  Cardiff
Lennon happy despite second loss
17 Jul 10 |  Celtic
Black Cats' Murphy joins Celtic
16 Jul 10 |  Celtic
Lennon anticipates McGeady exit
15 Jul 10 |  Celtic


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