Tom Rogic has long been put on a pedestal by the Australian Footballing landscape as the next great hope for the game. During his time in the A-League, he showed glimpses of his talent, year on year improving until Scottish giants Celtic took notice and snapped him up in 2013. As hopes continued to fall on Rogic’s young shoulders, injuries were taking their toll. Several soft-tissue injuries later, he’s now staring in the Scottish Premier League.
Earlier in the year I wrote an article saying that Tom Rogic is the best Australian export since Harry Kewell – it was a big claim to make given that he had just made his way back from a series of injuries, but now, injury free, he hasn’t looked back. Backing up from a 39 game, 10 goal season last year, Rogic has shown his quality Barcelona in Europe’s premier club competition, the Champions League. With his performance in the pulsating 3-3 draw with Manchester City drawing special praise from all over. In a starting performance that last 55 minutes, Rogic did battle with Manchester City’s might central midfield of Kevin De Bryune and Fernandinho, and more than held his own in the encounters.
Australia’s national team boss Ange Postecoglou said of Rogic’s performance “The Champions League is a massive competition and City are flying in the (English) Premier League so the fact that he could make an impact was great for him and great for his confidence,” Postecoglou told AAP. “It’s only really been this year he’s really played consistent football. The more he plays, the more of an impact he can make. Tommy’s shown he can play at the highest level; his performances are compelling his managers to make him a bigger part of it.”
Postecoglou’s final point is a key one, Rogic got his big break under former Celtic boss Ronny Delia, with the Dane showing enormous faith in the young Australian, and that faith has continued under new boss Brendan Rodgers, who is glowing in his praise of Rogic, who ‘Hoped and Praised that he could stay fit this year”.
“Tom is player I really like, he is very good,” Rodgers told the UK’s Sunday Express. “He has good skill and ability, but he is coming off the back of having a really bad time with injuries a couple of years ago. “Last year he was only really coming through that. Hopefully this year he can kick on again.”
This season alone, Rogic has played a role in getting Celtic to the Scottish Cup Final, getting them into and keeping them alive in the Champions League as well as gaining a ten point lead at the top of the Scottish Premiership – scoring overnight in Celtic’s win against Inverness CT.
In my previous article I said signing Rogic would be a huge show of faith, given the high level of consistency he has shown, it’s no longer a show of faith, more now an investment, and a worthwhile one at that. Rogic is going from strength to strength, and with more game time, that will continue. He has already shown this season that he is a step above others in the league, and it’s no longer a question of if he leaves, but now, when will he leave for bigger and better things?