Bastian Schweinsteiger finally said an emotional goodbye to Bayern Munich as the Chicago Fire midfielder played for both sides in his testimonial match.
The 34-year-old spent 17 years with Bayern, joining aged 13, before leaving for Manchester United in 2015.
He returned to Munich to play the first half of Tuesday’s match for his MLS side, but scored Bayern’s final goal in a 4-0 win after swapping at half-time.
“I am one of you and I will always be,” he told Bayern fans after the match.
Speaking as he held back tears following a video montage featuring messages from Bayern and Germany icons to their “Fussballgott” (football god), Schweinsteiger added: “My past belongs only to Bayern and nobody else. Without you, I wouldn’t be here.”
On Sunday, the ex-Germany captain was awarded the Bavarian Order of Merit and made the 18th member of Bayern’s Hall of Fame, joining club legends such as Franz Beckenbauer, Gerd Muller, Sepp Maier, Lothar Matthaus and Philipp Lahm.
During his time at the club, Bayern won the Bundesliga eight times, the German Cup seven times, and the Champions League in 2013.
After Arjen Robben made it 3-0, the sell-out crowd at Bayern’s Allianz Arena started chanting: “Bastian Schweinsteiger – score a goal!” And with seven minutes left, he volleyed in a David Alaba cross before being mobbed by his team-mates and lifted up into the air.
After former Bayern coach Louis van Gaal signed him for United for a reported £14.4m in July 2015, he made 35 appearances before moving to the United States on a free transfer in March 2017.
Now in his second year with Chicago Fire, the 2014 World Cup winner retired from international duty in 2016, having made 121 appearances for his country.