Saturday, September 30, 2023

Celtic Agree Deal With Aussie Giants For This Highly-rated Attacker: Smart From The Hoops?

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Pratyay Maitra
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If a report from The Daily Record is believed to be true, Celtic are closing in on Marco Tilio ahead of a potential summer transfer. As per Australian sources, the Hoops have struck a deal with Melbourne City for the young attacker. Once the personal terms are agreed and the medical is completed, the Aussie international would be unveiled as their second summer signing after Odin Thiago Holm.

The Celts had a slow start in the summer window compared to their bitter rivals Rangers. They hit a crisis following Ange Postecoglou’s resignation, but the board reacted quickly to re-appoint Brendan Rodgers as the new Parkhead boss. The Northern Irishman has now sanctioned the transfer of the youngster who must have impressed the Celtic scouts in recent months.

The 21-year-old forward progressed through the academy ranks of Leichhardt Saints FC, APIA Leichhardt, Sydney Olympic and Sydney FC before breaking into their senior side. However, the lack of playing time saw him reject a new contract and join Melbourne City in September 2020.

Celtic target Marco Tilio in action Central Coast Mariners
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – JUNE 03: Marco Tilio of Melbourne City in action during the 2023 A-League Men’s Grand Final match between Melbourne City and Central Coast Mariners at CommBank Stadium on June 03, 2023 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)

After a slow start to life in Melbourne, Tilio gradually improved his game and exhibited flexibility across the frontline. While he has been primarily deployed from the right, his expertise down the left and mobility as a ‘number 9′ should help him settle in Rodgers’ free-flowing game. With 20 goals and 19 assists in 82 appearances, the versatile attacking ace has played his part in City’s three successive Premiership silverware.

Why Tilio Could Be A Shrewd Signing For Celtic

Celtic have ample depth and quality high up the pitch, thanks to Postecoglou’s connections and contacts in the Far East that helped them rope in the likes of Kyogo Furuhashi, Daizen Maeda and Oh Hyeon-gyu. Also, the club’s scouting network did extremely well to spot Liel Abada, Filipe Jota and Sead Haksabanovic. Veteran James Forrest is now a sporadic option behind the younger stars and the addition of yet another promising starlet makes little sense on paper.

Having said that, Rodgers would prefer reinforcements to implement his philosophy and brand of football. Besides Forrest, all the other first-team forwards from his past tenure are no longer a part of the current Bhoys squad and the gaffer, therefore, would start afresh once the team report for pre-season in a couple of weeks’ time. Abada and Furuhashi could part ways this summer amid transfer rumours, whereas Oh and Haksabanovic have mostly been involved as ‘super subs’. Tilio, on the other hand, is a prized asset who holds all the traits to earn a cult status at Celtic Park.

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