Sonny Bill Williams is set to sign with the Sydney Roosters in the NRL.
Roosters coach Trent Robinson has confirmed that the club is expecting to sign Williams in the coming days, with only logistical details still to be sorted before Williams returns to the club where he won one of his two NRL titles.
"We're down the track in discussions with Sonny," Robinson said.
"There's a few things that need to be done to get it sorted but conversations are clear. It's just all the details that need to get sorted with how it's going to work.
"Travel won't be until next week, it's hard to get flights back, and then a quarantine period and training period.
"He's a Rooster and he's going to add value in some key areas."
The New Zealand Warriors were amongst the teams vying for Williams' signature after his Toronto Wolfpack side pulled out of the 2020 Super League season due to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Warriors CEO Cameron George had enquired with Williams' manager about the prospect of the former All Black joining the club, but Robinson is expecting Williams to sign with the Roosters, and is likely to hit the field with four or five games left in the regular season.
There are still some complications before Williams' signature is secured, however, with a rule barring players from holding simultaneous contracts with an NRL club and another franchise, meaning Williams would potentially have to terminate his reported two-year $10 million contract with the Wolfpack – as the NRL's loan arrangement does not apply to Super League clubs.
However, Wolfpack owner David Argyle, who plans on his club returning to the Super League in 2021, says he would be prepared to rip up the lucrative contract and sign a new deal for 2021.
"If Sonny wants to play NRL for the remainder of the season and come back to the Wolfpack, how it is done is semantics," Argyle told Channel Nine.
"Fundamentally, all we are doing is using loopholes that can be orchestrated or lawyerised to get around the intent."
Williams would also need to get into Australia, with the 34-year-old reportedly hoping to fly to Sydney next week, but still needing approval from the Australian Border Force. Williams' wife Alana has an Australian passport, while the family would also need an exemption for the two of their four children who were born in New Zealand.
Australian Rugby League Commission chairman Peter V'landys said he would be keen to help the Roosters get Williams into Australia.
"When you've got a player of the magnitude of Sonny Bill Williams you do everything you can to get him into our competition.
"It's a matter for border security but I'm pretty confident that he will be allowed into Australia."