Holman set to join Al Nasr
Australia international Brett Holman appears set to leave Aston Villa as he prepares to undergo a medical at Al Nasr.
The Socceroo, 29, could join several of his international team-mates in the Middle East after the UAE Pro-League club revealed they were close to signing him.
According to Al Nasr, Holman is due at the club for a medical on Friday and will become their designated Asian player, replacing Takayuki Morimoto.
"Brett represents a strong signing for us as he's an international player who has played in England, one of the top leagues in Europe," board member Fahad Hadi told The National.
"He has the qualities that we needed at Al Nasr and, most importantly, he has a lot of experience.
"It's good to have someone with that knowledge in our squad, and he will only improve the team."
Holman is eager to maximise his chances of playing time before the 2014 FIFA World Cup, which Australia qualified for thanks to a 1-0 win over Iraq on Tuesday.
He was reduced to a bit-part role under Paul Lambert at Villa last season and is likely to feature regularly at Al Nasr, with a two-year deal believed to be on the table.
Holman signed with Villa on March 2012 – joining the club in July – after impressing at AZ Alkmaar, where he won the Eredivisie and Dutch Super Cup.
Mark Bresciano, Sasa Ognenovski and Alex Brosque – members of the Socceroos squad for their recent World Cup qualifiers – all ply their trade in the Middle East.
Just what such a move does to Holman's hopes of gaining a starting place for Australia in Brazil remains to be seen.
His position behind the striker has come under pressure from up-and-coming star Tom Rogic, who joined Celtic in January and may earn a regularly starting berth for the Scottish Premier League champions next season.
A flurry of off-season signings at Villa may have also contributed to his decision.
Denmark striker Nicklas Helenius, midfielders Leandro Bacuna and Aleksandar Tonev and defenders Antonio Luna and Jores Okore are among those who have already signed.