Nigel de Jong has declared himself back ‘home’ after touching down at the Etihad Stadium this evening.
The former Manchester City midfielder, 36, is set to take part in the ever-popular Soccer Aid charity match at the place where he spent three memorable years between 2009 and 2012.
De Jong is part of a Rest of the World XI that will play England in a game screened live on ITV.
Managed by Harry Redknapp, de Jong will be joined in the Rest of the World XI by Usain Bolt, Roberto Carlos and another player with City connections – Pablo Zabaleta.
He will be made to wait for any on-field action, though, after being named on the bench by Redknapp.
England have a string of former Manchester United players in their ranks – such as Gary Neville, Paul Scholes and Wayne Rooney – while they will be managed by a team that includes former City and England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson and Micah Richards.
In a short clip posted on social media, de Jong said: “It’s good to be back. It’s always good to be back, man, this is home. What’s going on, City fans?
“It’s nice to see you checking in. It’s amazing to be back. You know what we are coming for. We are coming for the win. It’s always good to be back here. It feels like home. Come on you City!”
Having progressed through the famed Ajax system, de Jong signed for City from Hamburg for £16.2million in 2009.
He went on to make 137 appearances for the club – winning a Premier League title and League Cup – before sealing a switch to Italy with AC Milan three years later.
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