The immediate future of in-demand Jamie Maclaren has been resolved with the Socceroos striker re-joining Hibernian on loan - this time for the entire season.
Maclaren, 25, arrived in Edinburgh on Friday for a medical and to sign the paperwork after being granted a temporary release by 2.Bundesliga parent club Darmstadt.
The former Brisbane Roar goal machine was high on coach Neil Lennon’s wanted list after netting eight times in just 13 starts in his previous loan spell for the capital club.
And despite intense interest from an unnamed Eredivisie club and the likes of Sydney FC and Melbourne Victory in the A-League, Maclaren opted to return to the Scottish Premiership.
He has two years left on his Darmstadt deal but having figured only briefly sees his long-term future in the UK.
Assuming all the formalities go without a hitch, Maclaren - who has already scored for Darmstadt during pre-season - will be in line to start in next Sunday’s season-opener against Motherwell at Easter Road.
The following Friday (AEST) Hibs take on Molde in the first leg of their third round Europa League qualifier.
The move back to Scotland could act as a catalyst for Maclaren’s AFC Asian Cup aspirations, with new Australia coach Graham Arnold a long-time admirer of his finishing prowess.
Maclaren was a late call at the World Cup, but didn’t end up garnering any match minutes as coach Bert van Marwijk opted for Andrew Nabbout, Tomi Juric and Tim Cahill ahead of him.
If he carries on where he left off with Hibs last season he is certain to jump up the pecking order for a national team desperately seeking a proven predator in the post-Cahill era.
Lennon signaled Maclaren’s imminent arrival when he told reporters: “Jamie, very close. Close enough.
"That'd be another body in, another forward, and take the pressure off Florian Kamberi and Martin Boyle."