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Four more clubs hot on Rogic's trail

THE ODDS of Tom Rogic returning to the A-League are lengthening by the day, with two more English Premier League clubs and a couple from the top flight of Spanish football expressing interest in the Canberra sensation.

The Central Coast Mariners may have seen the last of their attacking dynamo as the Socceroos star enjoyed his first training session with Celtic on Friday.

While the Scottish giants are keen to secure the 20-year-old's signature and are reported to be willing to submit a transfer fee of more than $500,000 within days, Fulham and Queens Park Rangers have followed his progress and are also in the hunt.

Fulham, the home of Socceroos goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer, would be the more enticing proposition given the Londoners are sitting mid-table and aren't in immediate threat of relegation, as is the case for QPR.

Rogic also has ties with Fulham's academy director Huw Jennings, who held a senior role with the Nike Academy in Britain during Rogic's time there.

Reading is still in the mix despite Rogic reportedly turning down an offer from the EPL strugglers because of their likely demotion to the Championship.


The identity of the Spanish clubs, both reportedly in the Primera Division, is unknown.

Rogic left Australia last Thursday and is expected to remain with Celtic at a training camp in Spain until next week. He could line up for the Hoops in a friendly with Romanian club Steaua Bucharest on Tuesday if he is granted permission from the Mariners.

Celtic assistant manager Johan Mjallby told the Daily Record Rogic's reputation as a skilful attacking player made the Tuggeranong junior an enticing proposition.

''I don't know the figures or his contract situation, but he could be a gem,'' Mjallby said.

''The reports say he's a player who should suit us as he can open up defences with his style.

''We haven't signed him, but the good thing is he can maybe play a bit part against Steaua.''

Mariners coach Graham Arnold endorsed Rogic's imminent move to Celtic, who are the most successful club in Scottish history and preparing for a Champions League knockout tie with Italian heavyweights Juventus next month.

''Celtic is a massive club and it would be a good move for his development,'' Arnold told News Limited.

''Scottish football is not the style that would suit him down to the ground, but the fact that he'd be playing Champions League and winning things is a good step.

''They've had success with Australian players, and Mark Viduka and Scott McDonald are basically club legends.''

Rogic is off-contract with the Mariners at the end of the season, with the Gosford club standing to lose him for nothing if a transfer isn't finalised during the current window.

Rogic would have watched Saturday's match with the Melbourne Victory from the grandstands anyway as he serves the final game of a three-game suspension.