Celtic to sign Norwegian prospect Thomas Rogne
The 19-year-old Stabaek defender will move to Glasgow for a six figure sum after a successful trial, but is seen as one for the future.
Celtic are set to sign promising Norwegian defender Thomas Rogne after a successful trial period, STV Sport understands. The 19-year-old is out of contract with Stabaek, but under Fifa regulations they will be due compensation from the Parkhead club for developing the player.
The Tippeligaen side - who finished third in this season's competition, failing to defend their league crown - will be entitled to around £220,000, or two million kroner, in training compensation because of his age.
Tony Mowbray is believed to be confident that the six figure sum is a price worth paying for a player tipped as a hot prospect for the future. Rogne is highly regarded in Norway, despite only making 13 league appearances since his debut in 2007. He also recently earned a call up to Norway's under 21 squad.
Whilst the 6ft 2in central defender isn't expected to make an immediate breakthrough in the SPL, he could be a regular on the Celtic substitutes bench because of the under 21 ruling whilst he continues his development.
He missed most of the 2008 season in which Stabaek won the league title, after tearing the anterior cruiciate ligament in his knee during a pre-season friendly against Russians Krylia Sovetov in La Manga. He recovered sufficiently to play his part in his team's third place finish in the 2009 season and impressed in their Champions League qualification double header against FC Copenhagen in August, in which they lost 3-1 on aggregate.
Bemused officials at Rogne's club said on Thursday that they were unaware of any interest in their prized asset from Celtic or that he was in Scotland. As Rogne's contract expired on December 31, he has been excluded from the club's new year training sessions and has refused to sign the new contract offered to him.
Newspaper reports in Norway claimed on Thursday that Rogne was in "final negotiations" with the SPL club, despite interest from Brann Bergen and the offer of a new contract from his current employers.
Brann's sporting director, Roald-Bruun Hanssen, told Norwegian television earlier this week that Rogne had expressed a desire to move away from Norway instead of joining his club, saying: “We understand Thomas is keen to continue his career abroad."
Training compensation entitlement for Norway's top flight clubs is pegged by Fifa at €60,000 per year, meaning that Stabaek would be entitled to around £54,000 for each of the four years he has been registered with them, working out at a fee of £216,000.
Rogne is the latest in a series of players to have arrived at Celtic on trial, but is the first to have been offered a contract. Estonian winger Sander Puri was joined by Honduran defender Osman Chavez and Hungarian quartet Zsolt Korcsmar, Daniel Kovacs, Matyas Magos and Krisztian Simon on trial at Lennoxtown back in December, but none were offered terms.
More recently, Belarus international defender Dzmitry Verkhovtsov was training with the Celtic first team squad but departed Scotland under a cloud after just a few days, claiming that manager Mowbray had wasted his time by ignoring him.
Only attacking midfielder Ki Sung-Yeung and central defender Jos Hooiveld have been successful in securing moves to Celtic Park so far in the January transfer window, whilst four players – Gary Caldwell, Willo Flood, Barry Robson and Chris Killen – have all left for English clubs.