TOM ROGIC is on the brink of picking up his seventh title-winning medal at Celtic – not bad for a player overlooked by so many just last year.

The classy Australian playmaker was a bit-part performer under Neil Lennon during the spectacular fall from grace as the Hoops limped home without a trophy for the first time in 11 years.

Rogic scored one goal and made 10 league appearances as the team’s quest for a historic tenth successive championship was obliterated shortly after the turn of the year under the rubble of a prolonged sequence of wretched and inexplicable performances that saw the team a ridiculous TWENTY-FIVE points adrift in the race for the crown.

Fast forward to Sunday at Parkhead and the 29-year-old artist is poised to make his 46th appearance of the term and play his considerable role in piloting Celtic to a nine-point advantage with three games to play when Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s Ibrox outfit provide the opposition.

HAMPDEN HOORAYS…Tom Rogic congratulates Kyogo Furuhashi after his League Cup-winning goal against Hibs which was set up following a swift free-kick from the Aussie playmaker.

A victory for Ange Postecoglou’s men will ensure that only a collapse of unexpected seismic proportions will prevent the flag being flown over the east end of Glasgow in the new season.

It is a truly stupendous somersault in fortune for the club, especially when you take into account they lost three of their opening six league fixtures at Tynecastle, on the opening day, Ibrox, in the first derby of the campaign, and Livingston, the new manager and several of his summer recruits’ introduction to the dodgy plastic surface in West Lothian.

Celtic and Rogic have gone from performing in the shadows to take the central role in the spotlight with the Premiership prize within grasp and the League Cup already achieved in December with a the gritty comeback 2-1 victory over Hibs at Hampden which was lit up with two sublime second-half goals from Kyogo Furuhashi.

The stylish midfielder acknowledged there was still work to confront and said: “A season is always difficult, always quite gruelling, and you always have to earn it.

“Particularly at the start of the season, we were written off quite early.

GRAND FINALE…Tom Rogic challenges Hibs’ Joe Newell on his way to his fifth League Cup winner’s medal.

“To perform the way we have and play the football we have is the most pleasing and, on the back of the hard work, results have come. It’s been good.

“It’s funny sometimes when people write you off early. I don’t think it is extra motivation, but it is nice sometimes to prove people wrong.

“It wasn’t really our focus. Our focus was still the same throughout all the matches regardless of the result.

“We knew if we played to our ability and the level of effort was there, the results would come with it.

“If you look at the start of the season and the amount of players who came in and played virtually after they signed with one or two training sessions before a match, it took a bit of time to get everyone together. But once it did, we gelled it together pretty good.

“We’ve enjoyed some success, but we still have four games left and want to finish as strongly as possible. I’ve enjoyed it a lot.”

A WORD IN YOUR EAR…Tom Rogic gets some touchline instructions from Ange Postecoglou.

Rogic, who arrived in Glasgow from Central Coast Mariners in January 2013 before being loaned to Melbourne Victory for a season, continued: “Any trophy you win is extremely satisfying and rewarding and you have to work very hard for it.

“I’m fortunate enough that I’ve been a part of really successful teams here and won a lot of trophies.

“What I’ve learned in that time is nothing gets handed to you. It will be potentially rewarding, but we’ve got a lot of work to do over the next four games.

“We certainly don’t take anything for granted. Football is a funny game the way it works out and our focus is solely on our next match and making sure we are successful.

”We have four games left and they are all going to be important. It’s the same number of points for each match.”

GOVAN GLEE…Tom Rogic strokes home Celtic’s equaliser in the 2-1 win at Ibrox earlier this month.

Rogic has an excellent scoring record against the Govan club and emphasised that point when he struck the equaliser in the 2-1 win earlier this month as he helped rally the troops after they had conceded a third-minute opener to Aaron Ramsey.

The Aussie provided a quickfire leveller and Cameron Carter-Vickers completed the job when he swept a low left-foot drive beyond Allan McGregor for the winner before the interval.

Rogic, speaking to the Daily Record, added: “I don’t think it matters too much who scores. It’s the team that matters.

“I’m sure maybe I’ll look back at some point when I’m retired and feel pretty proud about things.

“But, right now, I don’t really care who scores.”

Rogic’s form has led him to being nominated along with his Hoops skipper Callum McGregor, former team-mate Craig Gordon, who rejoined Hearts two years ago, and Ross County’s goalscoring winger Regan Charles Cook on the shortlist for the PFA Scotland Player of the Year Award.

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