Mariners Confirm Rogic Capture

CENTRAL Coast Mariners can today confirm the capture of 19-year-old attacking ace Tomas Rogic on a five-month contract.

CENTRAL Coast Mariners can today confirm the capture of 19-year-old attacking ace Tomas Rogic on a five-month contract.

Rogic, who shot to prominence following Nike-s The Chance competition held in 2011, will commence training with the Mariners on Thursday and will be available for selection for Sunday-s NSW Derby against Sydney FC at the Sydney Football Stadium.

An attacking midfielder, Rogic spent time honing his craft and building his fitness under the guidance of Mariners staff in the lead up to his week long trial against 100 finalists in London last year. Having wowed the scouts during the trial, Rogic was one of only eight players awarded a place in the Nike Academy in front of a massive media contingent from around the world at Arsenal-s former training base.

Having offered Rogic a contract before he left for his Nike Academy trial, Mariners boss Graham Arnold had no hesitation in re-offering the precocious young talent a deal after his opportunity to sign with English Championship club Reading FC was scuppered due to work permit issues.

“We actually offered him a contract before he went to the Nike Academy,” Arnold said. “We-ve been monitoring him since he went and he-s another youngster we-ve got with a huge amount of potential.”

“He-s in no way a replacement for Matt Simon, it-s just another good story of the Mariners giving an Australian kid an opportunity.”

“Tom is a creative player, you give him the key and tell him to go and unlock the door. He-s naturally gifted, has a strong physique and can score goals as well. We have signed potentially and hopefully one of Australia-s future brightest stars,” he said.

An ecstatic Rogic this morning spoke of his delight to be joining the Mariners - a Club he believes he will settle into with ease.

“Obviously I-m very excited and hopefully it-s going to be a great opportunity,” Rogic said. “I feel pretty comfortable slotting in, I know most of the boys, ‘Arnie- (Graham Arnold) and people at the Club, so I-m just excited to get straight into it.”

Rogic said the chance to train with the Mariners before he left undeniably aided his selection in the Nike Academy.

“The aim was to get into a good Club environment and train at a good level before I went over and I think that the Mariners provided me with that,” he said.

“The standard that I came to before was something that I wasn-t used to, so it was obviously a great standard. Now coming back, I know what to expect and I understand the level a bit better.”

Rogic will attend the Mariners- mid-week clash with Melbourne Victory tonight and commence official squad duties on Thursday.