Duisburg claims Holland capture

MSV Duisburg have confirmed the signing of Socceroos midfielder James Holland on German TV although the formalities are not complete.

Duisburg coach Gino Lettieri announced the German 2.Bundesliga club had signed the Australian on Sky after Duisburg’s 3-1 loss to Kaiserslautern on Friday night.

Holland is available as a free agent after leaving Austria Wien, but a deal couldn’t be completed in time before Friday’s season opener.

The 26-year-old ex-Newcastle Jets man will undergo a medical with Duisburg on Monday and train with his new team-mates for the first time on Tuesday.

Lettieri said: “James is clear, he will come to us.”

The Duisburg boss tried to play down the excitement around any new signigns at the pre-match press conference on Thursday.

“It is not that we are signing Maradona,” Lettieri said. “The player who comes to us has to get used to the new league.”

Duisburg sporting director Ivica Grlic tried to cool the talk earlier in the week, stating the club was chasing “two or three candidates” to bolster their squad.

The Zebras have some financial constraints but won promotion to Germany’s second tier last season.