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Manchester City legend confirms plans to return to Etihad Stadium for emotional farewell



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Manchester City supporters can expect to be greeted and wished farewell by legendary former captain Ilkay Gundogan in the coming months.

The German midfielder brought an end to an illustrious time at the Etihad Stadium following the conclusion of the 2022/23 season and a Treble-winning achievement to accompany in the final weeks of the campaign.

Gundogan had the opportunity to remain with Manchester City through an extended contractual agreement, but ultimately opted to take up a fresh challenge with La Liga giants FC Barcelona and a free transfer to the Catalan club.

As such, with negotiations being finalised after the club’s UEFA Champions League final, Gundogan did not have a formal opportunity to bid farewell to supporters in east Manchester, but has issued an update on that possibility during a recent interview.

Speaking to, Ilkay Gundogan has confirmed his intentions to return to Manchester City and bid farewell to the supporters whom he built a special bond with during a seven-year stay at the Etihad Stadium.

“This is my plan,” Gundogan responded, when asked whether he would return to Manchester City to wave goodbye formally to fans. “I hope so. If not on the pitch next season, I will hopefully certainly find another opportunity.”

The German midfielder continued, “The Club, this team and the City fans will always be worth a visit!”

Gundogan has gone on to be a major hit in Barcelona since arriving from Manchester City last summer, bringing with him a relentless winning mentality inherited by his time at the Etihad Stadium and working with Pep Guardiola.

The 33-year-old has registered 55 appearances across all competitions this season whilst working under Xavi, scoring five goals and providing a further 14 assists in that time, with 4,180 match minutes to his name.

Gundogan’s wife, Sara Arfaoui has previously spoken about her love for the new lifestyle available in Barcelona, but has admitted in other conversations of somewhat missing what she and her husband had in the north-west of England.

“When you start to know a bit more about it (England), how to go around and have friends, I think the place changes completely and you can enjoy it,” Arfaoui explained. “I started to enjoy everything and I kind of miss Manchester now.”