"Austria Wien was my first club in Austria and the first club in Europe with which I was very successful. I've always kept Austria in my heart, and not just because of those fond memories. I also had a good time at LASK recently, but it feels a bit like coming home," says James Holland about his return to Vienna-Favoriten.
The 33-year-old played for Austria Wien from January 2012 until summer 2015, making a total of 126 competitive appearances, including six in the UEFA Champions League. In 2012/13, Holland was an undisputed regular in the Austrian championship team under then co-coach Manfred Schmid.
Sporting director Manuel Ortlechner: "With James Holland we are getting an absolute mentality player who will play an important leadership role on and off the field."
Coach Manfred Schmid: "James Holland fits very well into our team structure, both athletically and as a person, and embodies everything I envision in the position of central defensive midfielder. Due to our cooperation in the 2013 championship title, the phase of getting to know each other is no longer necessary. I'm looking forward to James and I'm convinced he will help us achieve our goals."
Holland: "Wants to be there for the youngsters"
"We have a lot of young players in the squad and I think it's a cool opportunity for me to take on a mentoring role of sorts. I'm not going to come into the dressing room and take over everything, but I want to be there for the boys, whether on or off the pitch, and support them with my experience," Holland said.
Before joining the Violets, James Holland played for Newcastle Jets in his native Australia and for AZ and Sparta Rotterdam in the Netherlands.
In 2015, the defensive midfielder moved to Germany to join MSV Duisburg and returned to Austria to join LASK in 2017 after further spells with Adelaide United in Australia and Liaoning FC in China. Holland reached the last 16 of the UEFA Europa League with the Upper Austrians in 2019/20.