Arjen Robben plays first Eredivisie game in over 16 YEARS as he makes second debut for his first club Groningen after coming out of retirement… but 36-year-old Dutch legend limps off after just 30 minutes with injury
- Arjen Robben played his first Eredivisie match in over 16 years against PSV
- Dutchman played first game since coming out of retirement to join Groningen
- Winger broke Robin Van Persie’s record of biggest absence between games
- But the 36-year-old’s return proved short lived after limping off 30 minutes in
Arjen Robben played his first Eredivisie match in over 16 years after returning for first club Groningen in their league match against PSV.
The flying winger was named as captain as he started in his familiar right-midfield position for their season opener — but his comeback proved short lived as he was hauled off after 30 minutes through injury.
The 36-year-old sensationally came out of retirement this summer to make a sentimental return to the club where he started his career after previously hanging up his boots when he left German champions Bayern Munich in 2019.
Arjen Robben played his first league game for Groningen since coming out of retirement
The winger broke Robin Van Persie’s record by playing his first Eredivisie game in over 16 years
After being named to feature from the start, Robben broke a record set by former Holland team-mate Robin Van Persie for the longest absence between two Eredivisie games — playing 16 years and 155 days since his last appearance for PSV in 2004.
It was a short-lived reunion for the former Real Madrid and Chelsea winger, though, after being withdrawn just half an hour into the game with an apparent muscular problem in the first half. He limped off and was replaced by replaced by Tomas Suslov.
His former side went 1-0 just five minutes later as Cody Gakpo opened the scoring for PSV before Robben’s replacement Suslov levelled things up only for the away side to secure a 3-1 win.
Robben sensationally reversed his decision to hang up his boots to sign for boyhood club
The 36-year-old’s reunion was short-lived after being taken off just 30 minutes into return
The former Netherlands international scored his first goal since the career U-turn in a pre-season friendly, slotting home with his left foot in typical style against Arminia Bielefeld.
Robben is considered one of the greatest wingers of his generation, with his dribbling skills and ability to cut inside and shoot becoming a trademark move associated with the Dutchman.
His most successful period came whilst playing for Bayern, winning eight Bundesliga titles, five DFB-Pokal’s and scoring the winner in the Bavarian’s 2012-13 Champions League triumph in a 10-year stint at the club.
Robben scored his first goal for Groningen in a pre-season friendly last week