Free agent Robbie Kruse is closing in on a return to Melbourne Victory as new coach Marco Kurz looks to add quality to his wafer-thin roster.
The Socceroos attacker has been back in Australia for over three weeks after his two-season stretch at 2.Bundesliga side VfL Bochum came to an end, leaving him with a finite number of options.
Whilst there has been some interest in Germany, for Kruse - who turns 31 in October - the loudest voice in his ear has been that of Kurz who is keen to repatriate Kruse to the club which acted as the launchpad to his near eight-year European career.
Talks, first reported by Fairfax Media, have been ongoing since the Queenslander arrived home, with Victory the sole A-League club Kruse has been in discussions with.
The winger struck eight goals in 44 appearances for Bochum before an apparent fallout with coach Robin Dutt precipitated his mutual departure last month.
Kruse has fond memories of his two seasons under Ange Postecoglou at Victory, teasing and tormenting opponents on the way to 16 goals from 39 appearances.
If his signature is sealed, and he can reprise anything close to that sort of form, then Kruse will remain a core member of Socceroos coach Graham Arnold’s FIFA World Cup qualification plans.
Though vilified by social media trolls over his performances for the green and gold, the 75-cap Kruse believes he still has much to offer to the national team, with the likes of Perth Glory's Chris Ikonomidis and Sydney FC's Rhyan Grant proving that playing in the A-League is no impediment to selection.
Kurz is in a hurry to bolster the attacking depth of his squad - which currently stands at just 15 players all up - after the loss of Kosta Barbarouses to Sydney FC and the apparent exit of off-contract former Socceroo James Troisi, who has been linked with a move to Greece.
Kruse’s representatives declined to comment on his future when contacted by The World Game.