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CELTS LINE UP ROCKY FREE!; Chelsea outcast is new Burns target.

Celtic are set to turn to Chelsea outcast David Rocastle in a desperate bid to solve their midfield crock crisis.

The 29-year-old former England star is so far out the picture at Stamford Bridge that he hasn't even been given a squad number.

And I understand Chelsea would be willing to release him without a fee.

That has alerted Parkhead boss Tommy Burns, who is keen to take Rocky on loan as his own injury worries pile up.

Burns has seen top stars Paul McStay and Phil O'Donnell laid low with injuries - and stand- in skipper Peter Grant is banned for tomorrow's clash with Dunfermline after being sent off against Hearts on Tuesday.

Rocastle has been plagued by injury since quitting Arsenal where he won championship medals in 1989 and 1991. He

had troubled stints at Leeds and Manchester City and made just one Premiership appearance for Chelsea last season after breaking his toe.

Now Burns may take a chance on Rocky being able to solve his short-term problem.

Meanwhile, I understand the match programme for tomorrow's meeting with the Pars will have NO contribution from Celtic players.

It's believed skipper Paul McStay told startled staff that the players are withholding co-operation due to the bonus row revealed exclusively by Record Sport.

That action came despite claims in other newspapers that players are NOT boycotting club publications.

The row centres around the bonuses on offer to Celts for winning the league.

I understand top stars can expect to net a jackpot of around pounds 25,000 - including extra weekly payments for wins - if the Parkhead club net the title.

But leading Rangers aces can pocket between pounds 40,000 and pounds 60,000 if they make it nine in a row and win at least one of the two domestic cups.

Meanwhile, Raymond Sparkes - who represents EIGHT Celtic first-team stars - last night lashed out at the club's bid to ban agents from their Players' Lounge.

He fumed: "It's an attempt to influence players on their own personal choice and that's a dangerous step. It's disappointing that the club should make this move."
COPYRIGHT 1996 Scottish Daily Record & Sunday
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1996 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Sport
Author:Grahame, Ewing
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Sep 20, 1996
Words:352
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