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Fernandinho returns to Brazil’s Athletico Paranaense

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Former Manchester City captain Fernandinho has returned to his first club and signed with Atlético Paranaense, the Brazilian club revealed on Monday.

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The 37-year-old midfielder, who left City at the end of last season after a nine-year spell in England with trophies, has signed a two and a half year contract.

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“I’m returning home with great satisfaction… Knowing that I can apply little by little everything that I have achieved over the years playing in Europe,” said Fernandinho at a press conference dedicated to his arrival in the southern city of Curitiba.

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Born in the state of Parana, whose capital is Curitiba, Fernandinho began his Atletico career as a teenager in 2002 before moving to Ukraine to join Shakhtar Donetsk in 2005.

After eight years in Donetsk, when he won six league titles, four Ukrainian Cups and the UEFA Cup that preceded the Europa League, in 2009 Fernandinho caught the attention of City scouts.

By then, he was already a Brazilian international and had won over 50 caps, helped the Selecao win the 2019 Copa América and played in two World Cups.

At City, he has won five Premier League titles, an FA Cup, six League Cups and played in the 2021 Champions League final.

In April, he shocked his City manager Pep Guardiola when he announced during a pre-match press conference ahead of the Champions League quarter-final second leg against Atlético Madrid that he would be leaving the club at the end of the season.

He said he desperately wants his kids to see him play for the club he supports.

Guardiola supported his decision and called Fernandinho “an incredible player”.

Atlético are currently third in the Brazilian league and have made it to the round of 16 of the Copa Libertadores, where they will face Paraguay’s Libertad.

Fernandinho will be available from July 18, when Brazilian teams will be able to register new players.

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Source: sports.yahoo.com

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