Samaras, Nakamura and ‘Big Mick’ McManus Latest

THREE FORMER CELTIC stars are in the news at the moment with one signing a new contract to continue playing despite being in his forties, another looking at coming out of retirement to play in Italy’s Serie A and the third rumoured to be on his way back to Paradise!


Let’s start with Georgios Samaras. The former Celtic talisman appeared to have quit playing last October as he he took up a boardroom role at his boyhood club, OFI Crete. Now though struggling Serie A side Frosinone have contacted the former Celt with an SOS plea to help them avoid relegation.

The Italian journalist Gianluca Di Marzio reports that 33 year old Samaras is currently considering an offer from Frosinone. The Italians apparently met with Samaras’ representatives today about the move.

Frosinone are currently second bottom of Serie A, sitting two points ahead of bottom placed Chievo.

The ex-Celtic star is the man that they feel could make the difference and help keep them in the top flight, having won promotion last season.

Samaras had many fine performances for Celtic and in particular seemed to be at his best in the really big games, especially in Europe.

Here are some of his goals…


One of the most cultured footballers ever to have worn the Hoops, Shunsuke Nakamura has signed a new contract to continue playing, despite being 41 years of age.

Naka, as the Celtic fans affectionally called the Japanese midfielder, has put pen to paper on a new deal with Jubilo Iwata in the J League. His free kick to give Celtic a vital Champions League win over Manchester United was one of the finest ever goals scored at Celtic Park – as well as one of the most important!

He also scored a late free-kick winner at Rugby Park to wrap up the league title for Gordon Strachan’s side.

What a player Naka was!


Former Celtic captain Stephen McManus has been working as a coach at Motherwell since hanging up his boots in August 2017. Now though it looks like ‘Big Mick’ could be on his way back to Celtic to join Brendan Rodgers’ backroom staff.

McManus won 7 trophies for Celtic and captained the side through qualification to the last 16 of the Champions League – heady days indeed.

Perhaps the best memory was his goals at Tynecastle when Celtic were down and out at 2-0 down before McManus was the unlikely goalscoring hero in a remarkable fight-back to secure a brilliant 3-2 win on New Years Day 2006.

ALSO ON The Celtic Star…

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Bayo, who knocked back Inter Milan, can be our ‘Head Bhoy’ says Celtic legend…See HERE.

Brendan Says – An End to our Away Day Blues!…See HERE.

Gutman snubs Steven Gerrard for the Hoops…See HERE.

Rodgers on Griffiths: ‘The club are dealing with it, it’s a private matter’…See HERE.

Tierney’s Hip is a real concern for Brendan Rodgers…See HERE.

Jim Craig – Jimmy McGrory was in scintillating form…See HERE

About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email

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