Gamble extends City contract

EIRCOM League champions Cork City have received a boost ahead of the new season with the news that Joe Gamble has signed a two-year contract extension with the club.

Midfielder Gamble, one of City’s most consistently impressive performers as they won the league title, has now committed himself to the club until the end of the 2008 season, a decision warmly welcomed by manager Damien Richardson.

“It’s a compliment to the both Joe and the club that they could negotiate a two-year extension,” he said. “Joe is a vital part of the bright future for Cork City FC.”

Richardson also revealed that he will have three players, from Portugal, Bulgaria and Scotland, in Cork for trials next week.

Elsewhere, Trevor Molloy joined St Patrick’s Athletic yesterday after what was described as an “amicable departure” from Shamrock Rovers.

With the relegated Hoops anxious to keep budgets tight, it seemed inevitable that one of the club’s best-known and highest-paid players would be on the move. Striker Molloy now joins former club Pats and he said there were no hard feelings.

“I parted with Rovers on the best of terms and wished Pat Scully well. I’d like to thank all the Rovers fans, they’ve been brilliant. Everyone knows how I feel about the club but sometimes you have to move on.

“Going to St Pats is a great opportunity for me and I’m looking forward to facing the new challenges.”

Meanwhile, women’s football in Ireland has received a significant boost as the Irish senior team has broken into UEFA’s top 20 rankings for the first time. Moving up three places, the team is now ranked 20th in Europe and 32nd in the world. This follows Ireland’s promotion last year to the top flight of women’s football.

Said manager Noel King: “We are obviously delighted. Getting promotion was one thing, but beating Belgium and Sweden during the year, and winning our first ever World Cup point in Scotland, was very satisfying.”

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