If you cast your mind back to last summer, it won’t paint a pretty picture for Celtic midfielder Tom Rogic.
The Australian’s career at Parkhead was all but done as the Hoops agreed a fee with a Qatar-based team to sell him. Indeed, after starting just ten times in the Premiership last term, no one would have given you a second look if you suggested that his Celtic stay was coming to an end again.
However, step forward Ange Postecoglou; his fellow Australian who has revived his progress in quite some style.
With that in mind, it’s hardly a surprise to see the pair now linking up so well in Glasgow.
The £16k-per-week creative midfielder scored in the 6-0 win over Dundee last weekend and was even more impressive against Jablonec on Thursday night – that was despite not finding the net in their 3-0 victory.
Rogic was a constant threat from an attacking point of view but it wasn’t just his offensive work which caught the eye as he worked hard for the team off the ball also.
As the half-time whistle was blown at Paradise, the Aussie left the field having won back possession on four occasions, the third-most of any Celtic player.
What caught the eye the most, however, was his passing. Rogic spread the ball around intricately and evaded challenges like Aiden McGeady in his prime, setting the tone for a vibrant performance.
David Turnbull popped up with two goals but we’ve become accustomed to seeing that from the Scot. He has been an effervescent bubble of energy since signing from Motherwell last summer, but on this occasion it was Rogic who deserved rare praise.
Speaking about the Australian on A Celtic State of Mind post-game, Paul John Dykes was keen to wax lyrical about his performance, commenting: “When he was in the mood for that first 50/60 minutes, what a player he is. A fit and motivated Tom Rogic is a fantastic player to have in your team.”
That was followed up by a phenomenal appraisal from ACSOM pundit Kevin Graham. He added: “He’s like a ballet dancer, he’s majestic to watch. He looks like he’s wanting to put a shift in.”
From the very first moment in the game, Rogic looked up for the fight.
He threaded Kyogo Furuhashi through on goal within the first 30 seconds but the Japanese striker spurned the opportunity. That was a rare miss from the forward who up to this point has been ruthless inside the penalty area for Celtic.
It would have been a deserved assist for Rogic but even though he didn’t contribute to a goal, those numbers will soon start to flow.
The Australian is well and truly back; it’s a joy to see.