Andriy Shevchenko came to "the end of a journey" in the summer when he rejoined FC Dynamo Kyiv but the two-time AC Milan striker will be back at San Siro tonight to face FC Internazionale Milano.
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Andriy Shevchenko came to "the end of a journey" when he rejoined FC Dynamo Kyiv but he is already preparing to return to San Siro to face his old club AC Milan's adversaries FC Internazionale Milano.
The Ukraine striker scored 14 goals against Inter during his two spells at Milan, as well as twice playing a crucial part in knocking the Nerazzurri out of the UEFA Champions League. He struck decisive goals in the 2002/03 and 2004/05 competitions to help the Rossoneri overcome their city rivals and will be looking to repeat the trick when Dynamo visit San Siro on Tuesday. "I'll be going back to a stadium where I played for eight years," he said. "I've got great memories. We'll be playing a great team with great players and a great manager. Our aim is to fight for every second we're on the pitch and to give Inter problems."
End of a journey
Shevchenko initially shot to prominence with Dynamo in the 1990s and this summer returned to his homeland after a ten-year spell with Milan and Chelsea FC. "It means so much to be able to finish my career in the place where I started," added the 33-year-old. "It's the end of a journey. I come from the Kiev region; I was two when my family moved here. I started off playing for the Dynamo youth team when I was nine. I left here and now I've come back to play and probably finish my career."
The talismanic forward has already struck three times since returning and has helped his boyhood club take a four-point lead over FC Shakhtar Donetsk at the top of the Ukranian Premier League. Meanwhile, a 3-1 victory over FC Rubin Kazan and a 2-0 defeat by FC Barcelona have left Dynamo second in Group F ahead of their trip to third-placed Inter.
"How far can we go? That's a beautiful question, really," Shevchenko continued. "We've got great players but we lack experience. This team can do well, definitely, but our aim is to fight for every second we're on the pitch, to create problems for all the great teams we have in our group and to try to get past this stage – either in first or second place."
Having returned to be greeted by former strike partner Serhiy Rebrov working for Dynamo's youth team, the prospect of the once deadly duo reforming in a coaching capacity could eventually be on the cards. "We're great friends," said Shevchenko. "It won't happen for a while because Serhiy's finished and he's working with the young players, whereas I still feel like playing. I want to carry on down that path but, one day, maybe. You never know."