The Greatest Returning Club Heroes of All-Time
After Torres' return to Atleti, we went on a hunt for the greatest club heroes who returned 'home' to their beloved clubs. Here are our favourite high-profile returns.
El Nino may not be the same player that left Atleti back in 2007, but the Madrid side admiration for the Liverpool star/Chelsea flop has not wavered. During his 6 years at Atleti, Torres made 244 appearances and found the back of the net 91 times. While his recent record is no where near that, the return on loan until 2016 is something special for both Torres and Atletico. Now the question is, can he actually score again?
While Daniel Agger only played one full season for Brondby before sealing his move to Liverpool, the Danish defender won the 'Talent of the year' award and become a key part of their title winning side. Eight years at Liverpool made him a star in the Premier League playing 175 times before he was surprisingly linked with a move back to Denmark. After Agger sealed his move back to Brondby it was lauded, not only by the Danish clubs fanbase, but the majoirty of Danish football. One football pundit, Flemming Toft called it "The greatest thing ever in Danish club football".
After joining Chelsea in 2004 for £24m Drogba went down in Chelsea history. Scoring an incredible 157 goals in 341 games, the last of which was arguably the most important, after his goal sealed the Champions League in his final game before leaving. After a decent spell in Turkey with Galatasaray... Drogba, now 36, has returned to West London to join up with his good pal Jose. Although he is only a bit part player nowadays playing backup to Costa, Didier is still adored by the Chelsea faithful.
Thierry Henry joined Arsenal in 1999 from Italian giants Juventus. And the rest as they say, is history. 'King Henry' went on to score an outrageous 228 goals in 377 games for the club before moving on to Barcelona. After his move to NY Red Bulls Thierry returned on loan in 2012, and although he only made 6 sub appearances he still managed to find the net twice. Goals which certainly meant alot to the Arsenal faithful.
Kaka and A.C Milan, the perfect combination. The elegant attacking midfielder joined Milan in 2003 and in 4 years proved himself to be the greatest player in the world at the time and continued to be loved by the Milan faithful over his 6 year spell at the club. In 2009 his incredible performances led to the galacticos of Real Madrid offering Milan an incredible 68 Million euros, an offer they couldn't refuse. After years of being in and out of the team in Madrid Kaka expressed a desire to return to his 'home'... Milan. In 2013 he returned scored his 100th Milan goal and finished his love affair with the Rossoneri. He left at the end of that season but stated “I am and I will always be a Milan fan,”
Juan Román Riquelme
After breaking onto the scene in 1996 Riquelme made almost 200 appearances before moving on to Barcelona. By 2006 Riquelme was back in Argentina, on loan at Boca to help his former club from Villarreal... and then returned once more in 2008 on a permanent deal. In total his Boca career spanned 388 appearances scoring 93 goals throughout. A true legend. After announcing his retirement from football Riquelme said “Now I am just a fan. I will go and suffer in the stadium." Proving his love for the club that love him back.