From Robin van Persie to Arjen Robben: 6 footballers who returned to their childhood club
First Published Nov 25, 2020, 5:51 PM IST
A number of footballers move on to bigger clubs for higher challenges and success. However, that does not mean they owe nothing to their youth clubs. Several footballers have returned to their childhood clubs to give them their valuable services and retire there itself.
Footballers are one of the most talented athletes in the world, which is evident in their extraordinary footballing skills. While some are born talented, some acquire these skills at their childhood club.
However, some of these top talents leave for bigger clubs, at the latter stage, to pursue higher dreams and challenges, as they eye ultimate success. However, it does not mean bidding goodbye to their boyhood club, as we take a look at six prominent footballers who returned to play for the club they started their career with.
Arjen Robben: Another Dutch legend hits the list, who has been an integral part of the national team's success, besides helping Bayern Munich notch numerous titles. The winger also had tremendous success playing for Chelsea and Real Madrid. However, it was Groningen where it all started since 1996 as a youth, before leaving in 2002 as a senior pro. Although he had announced his retirement last year while playing for Bayern, he has made a comeback this season, as he is once again playing for Groningen.
Dirk Kuyt: The Dutch footballer made a name for himself after he was roped in by English giants Liverpool in 2006, where he played for six seasons. He had begun his career with Quick Boys in 1985 and played there until 1998. Nonetheless, it was in 2018 when he returned to the club for one last season, before calling it quits.
Andriy Shevchenko: The Ukrainian striker was mostly famous for his stint at AC Milan, where he won several titles, including the UEFA Champions League (UCL). Nonetheless, it all began for him in Ukraine, when Dynamo Kyiv roped him in, in 1986. It was in 1999 when he left the club as a senior pro for Milan. After a brief stint in Chelsea, he returned to Kyiv in 2009 and played there until 2012, before he retired.
Diego Milito: The Argentine striker is best known for his stint at Inter Milan, where he won some titles, including the UCL. He also had a successful reign in Real Zaragoza, prior. However, it is Racing Club where it all began, before he left in 2003. Nonetheless, following his success in Inter, he left for Racing in 2014 and played there for two seasons, before retiring from the sport.
Carlos Tevez: The second Argentine in the list who is no stranger to all, for both good and bad reasons. He is most famous for his stint at Manchester United and Manchester City, followed by Juventus. However, it had all started at Boca Juniors, as a youth in 1997, before he left for Corinthians in 2005. Nonetheless, after his stint with Shanghai Shenhua in 2017, he returned to Boca the next year, where he is currently playing his final career stages.
Robin van Persie: Seems like the Dutch have the knack of signing off from the childhood club. The third Dutch name in the list is Robin van Persie, who is famous for his reign in Arsenal and United. Nonetheless, before he rose to fame, it was Feyenoord, where he debuted as a senior pro in 2001, while he had been associated with them as a youth, since 1999. It was in 2004 when he left for Arsenal. Meanwhile, it was in 2018 when he completed his three-year stint with Fenerbahçe, as he returned to Feyenoord for one last season, before signing his career off.
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