NEW Bhoy Marco Tilio admitted the influence of two Celtic favourites helped influence his decision to join the champions.
The Melbourne City international has signed a five-year deal at Parkhead, as CQN forecast yesterday.
The 21-year-old goalscoring winger, who netted 10 times to help his club seal the A-League title last season, was quick to pay his respects to the original Wizard of Oz, Tom Rogic, and Aaron Mooy who announced his desion to retire earlier in the day, despite having a year of his contract still to run.
Tilio is ready to hit the ground running and said: “I’m ecstatic that I’m coming over to Europe, coming to such a big club and team and I’m super-excited
RARING TO GO…Marco Tilio is “super-excited” at joining Celtic.
“I hope to bring all my qualities, take on players in and around the box, help the team contribute to goals with assists and, hopefully, put a few in the back of the net, as well.
“It’s an amazing opportunity for myself and having seen Aussies go over there and do well at such a prestigious club, it’s a massive opportunity for myself that I couldn’t deny.
“And being around those guys, Aaron Mooy and Tommy Rogic, in the national team camp over recent years, obviously helped make my decision easier.”
Moving to Europe was a target of the ambitious youngster as he admitted: “It’s always been a plan ever since I moved over to Melbourne three years ago.
“It was my plan to go over, do well and, hopefully, proceed to go on to different and bigger and better things. Now I think is the time for me to come over to Europe and really challenge myself.
SMILES BETTER…Aaron Mooy celebrates the League Cup Final success in February.
“And I’m really excited with the opportunity I have to come to this club and, hopefully, I put my best foot forward and play some good football.
“I think it’s a massive opportunity to be a part of a team that plays in the Champions League and have a winning mentality in bringing trophies. I think that’s important.
“And as a player that’s what you want to be a part of and what you want to do is win trophies, win games. For me, it’s always been about that here in Australia and I want to come over there and do the same thing.”
Tilio managed to have a quick word with his new gaffer, Brendan Rodgers, and, speaking to Celtic TV, continued: “I did have a chat with him a few days ago and I was really excited to have the opportunity to speak to him.
“The plan the club has for me and for the team is a great opportunity as I said I couldn’t deny and I’m really looking forward to getting over to Scotland.
“I’m just finalising a few things and I’m trying to pack up everything here in Australia, and as soon as I can, I’ll head over to Scotland, meet all the team, the whole club.
HAMPDEN HERO…Tom Rogic races away in joy after netting the opener in the 3-0 League Cup success over Aberdeen in 2016.
“I’m really excited about that and, hopefully, I can get over there as soon as possible and get right into the thick of things.
“I think it’s amazing, obviously the pre-season is so long, it drags on, and in Europe it’s a lot shorter than it is here, so I’m looking forward to getting right into it and playing games.
“I think that’s exciting as well that you get over and start to gel with the team as much as possible before the competitions and season starts.”
Tilio will wear the No.23 shirt he wore while with Melbourne, and he said: “My birthday is August 23 and 23 is sort of my lucky number, so it’s done me well over my time here in Melbourne and I want to carry that on coming over to Celtic.”
So, today it has been a case of a farewell and best wishes to one Australian, Aaron Mooy, and hello and welcome to another, Marco Tilio.