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Fowler to return to Oz

Former Liverpool striker Robbie Fowler has verbally accepted an offer to re-join Perth Glory for next season although a contract is yet to be signed.

The Glory have been in discussions with Fowler since last December as the striker, who turns 36 on Saturday, weighed up whether to spend one more season in the A-League or head back to England to further his coaching ambitions.

With the A-League on a break before the new campaign starts in October, Fowler has joined League One side MK Dons as part of Karl Robinson's backroom staff, while he will also spend the next week at Bury assisting caretaker manager Richie Barker.

But despite having taken some steps towards becoming a coach after retirement, Fowler has given the clearest indication yet that he wants to play out one more season in Australia, having already spent two years in the country with the now defunct North Queensland Fury and then Perth.

"As you know we have made an offer to Robbie Fowler on reduced terms for next season,'' said a Perth Glory spokesperson. "Robbie has verbally confirmed his commitment for the 2011/12 season but the club will make a formal announcement once the contract is signed.''

Fowler was the Glory's international marquee player during the 2010-11 season, although he was slightly disappointing, scoring nine goals during a campaign where Perth came second-last, with five of those coming in two matches.

With the Glory hoping to snap up New Zealand striker Shane Smeltz as their international marquee player for next season, Fowler's wages will have to be incorporated into the club's general salary cap.

Despite club chief executive Paul Kelly maintaining that the Smeltz deal is close to being finalised, it has been reported the Kiwi international is still considering a big-money offer from China.


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