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"A bit like home"

Robben looking forward to his return to Eindhoven

He has already been to Wembley, the Camp Nou, San Siro, Old Trafford and the Santiago Bernabeu. However, when FC Bayern go to Eindhoven on Tuesday evening in the Group Stage of the Champions League, it will represent a first for the well-travelled Arjen Robben. The Dutchman will play a competitive game at the Phillips Stadion against his former club for the first time.

“It’s the first time since I’ve moved abroad that I get to play a Champions League game in Holland – and it’s against my former club,” said the 32-year-old winger to fcbayern.com. The Dutchman has labelled this upcoming game for the record champions as “very special”. He continues, “I am really looking forward to the game in Eindhoven. It’s a bit like home.”

Robben joined PSV as an 18-year-old in the summer of 2002 from FC Groningen in the north of the country. He went on to make 75 appearances in all competitions in two years for his new club, scoring 21 goals. In his first season at Eindhoven, he won the title at his first attempts, the Super Cup and was awarded the Johan Cruiff Prijs as ‘Dutch Football Talent of the Year’.

“They were two great years and very important for my development,” recalls Robben on his time at Eindhoven. Robben also began his highly-decorated career outside the domestic game while at PSV when he made his Champions League debut in a group game against Borussia Dortmund in October 2002. Fourteen years and 90 Champions League appearances later, Robben now returns to his former stomping ground.

“I will just enjoy the evening in Eindhoven,” said Robben, who is looking forward to seeing “a lot of nice people” once again. But there will be no gift for PSV from the guests, he stressed. “Hopefully we can play well. We just have to win because we still want to finish top of the group.”

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