Socceroo Mark Milligan's long-held dream of playing club football in England is still alive courtesy of Australia's steady FIFA world ranking.
And the club that wanted him this time last year -- Bolton Wanderers -- have renewed their interest in the 71-cap utility, who has been a free agent since his exit from Saudi Arabian side Al Ahli earlier this month.
English Championship outfit Bolton attempted to sign Milligan last July but were thwarted at the last moment because of FA regulations, which stipulated he would not be considered for a work permit because Australia's average world ranking for the two years prior sat outside the world's top 50.
Unlike some Socceroos of European heritage, he does not hold an EU passport which would allow him to circumvent that rule.
But 12 months on, it now sits in Milligan's favour.
The Socceroos have since improved their ranking to an average position of 44th in the world since July 2016 -- clearing the way for Milligan and any other players who have featured at least 75 percent of Australia's matches during that period to move to the United Kingdom.
Milligan's agent Buddy Farah revealed the former Melbourne Victory skipper had already turned down an approach from Scottish Premiership outfit Hibernian -- the club where Jamie Maclaren played on loan at the end of last season.
Farah also confirmed Bolton were still keen on him but indicated their current offer was not adequate.
"There has been talk about Bolton Wanderers wanting to do something but at this stage they're having some problems with their financial situation," Farah told AAP.
"So from Millsy's perspective, unless they're able to be in a better position financially I don't think he'd be wanting to take any risks with his last few years of his career.
"There's no doubt he wants to move to England, there's no doubt there has been clubs that have shown interest."
Farah said "most" A-League clubs had shown interest in Milligan, who turns 33 next month.
"We've had inquiries from different Asian countries but I don't think that's attractive at this stage of his career. He's done Asia," he said.
"We're going through a number of different opportunities and at some stage we'll make a decision."