Celtic still in talks with Australia over Tom Rogic's availability for Rangers, says Brendan Rodgers

Celtic's Tom Rogic celebrates making it 1-0 1:23
Brendan Rodgers hopes common sense prevails and Australia will allow Tom Rogic to play against Rangers before reporting for international duty.

Brendan Rodgers says Celtic are unhappy about the prospect of Tom Rogic missing their showdown with Rangers due to his call-up to Australia’s Asia Cup squad.

Rogic is scheduled to link up with his international team-mates in Dubai on Thursday ahead of their Asia Cup campaign, which kicks off with a match against Jordan in Abu Dhabi on January 6.

Rodgers says Rogic is torn between club and country but insists talks remain ongoing with the Australian federation as the Celtic midfielder is keen to play in the Old Firm derby before linking up with his national team.

"At this moment in time he is due to play his last game for us away at Aberdeen (on Boxing Day) and then he is due to fly out to meet up with the Australia squad on the 27th," Rodgers said ahead of Saturday's visit of Dundee.

 during the UEFA Europa League Group B match between Celtic and RB Leipzig at Celtic Park on November 8, 2018 in Glasgow, United Kingdom.
Image: Rodgers believes the situation facing Rogic is unfair

"It's not something we are overly happy about. We want to work and build relationships with federations - and I spoke with Graham Arnold, (the manager of Australia) here - but you do that through working together on what is best for each player.

"We feel Tom can play and be available for the 29th and fly out after the game and meet up with the squad on the morning of the 30th and still be there virtually a week before he is due to play his first game.

"Tom wants to play in the game but he also wants to play for Australia and it's a position I don't think the player needs to be in.

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"Celtic-Rangers games are clearly showcase games. They are great games - and he's been great in them for us - and of course he can play in it, and still travel and recover and prepare for the cup competition in January.

"I know the club are looking into it more and I hope we can find a sensible solution which allows him to play and then travel and be ready for Australia."

Rodgers also remain hopeful Celtic striker Odsonne Edouard will be fit for next week's crunch games against Aberdeen and Rangers.

Celtic's Odsonne Edouard celebrates his late goal
Image: Rodgers hopes Odsonne Edouard can return next week

The French forward came off with an abductor problem in the 3-0 home win over Motherwell on Wednesday night, leaving the Hoops with no recognised strikers.

Celtic visit Pittodrie on Boxing Day before the Old Firm derby at Ibrox three days later, the last two fixtures before the winter break.

Rodgers said: "He [Edouard] won't be available for the game on Saturday but we are very hopeful that next week he will be ready."

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