The first Chinese player to appear in the UEFA Champions League, Dong Fangzhuo, has returned to Europe after agreeing an 18-month contract at Legia Warszawa following a successful trial.
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Chinese striker Dong Fangzhuo has signed an 18-month contract at Legia Warszawa, with the former Manchester United FC player "extremely happy" to be starting a new adventure in Poland.
The 25-year-old has been on trial at the capital club for the last couple of weeks, and agreed the deal after passing medical tests on Monday. "I am extremely happy," said Dong. "I worked very hard last month and it has paid off. I had three months without proper training before I came here so it was hard to catch up with the other players, but I managed to show what I could do in some friendly games."
The club's sporting director Mirosław Trzeciak added: "We have brought in a good player who can help us compete for the title." Dong became the first Chinese player to join United in 2004, and was then loaned out to R. Antwerp FC until 2007. He became the first Chinese player to play in the UEFA Champions League on 12 December that year, coming on as a substitute against AS Roma.
In 2008, Dong returned home to rejoin Dalian Shide FC, the club he left to sign for United, but moved on again this year after a barren spell in front of goal. He is now likely to become the first Chinese player to play in the Ekstraklasa when Legia take on MKS Cracovia Kraków on Friday in their first game of the spring season. Legia are second in the table, trailing leaders Wisła Kraków by five points.