The Dutchman signed for City in 2009 from Bundesliga side Hamburger SV, and owing to his tough tackling and no-nonsense style of play, de Jong quickly established himself as a popular figure amongst the club’s supporters.
Affectionally labelled as ‘The Lawnmower’ by the City faithful, de Jong appeared in a total of 137 matches across all competitions for the Sky Blues, and was notably a key member of the side that won the 2011 edition of the FA Cup.
Over ten years on from that memorable day, the ex-midfielder has reflected on the famous victory which ended City’s 35-year trophy drought.
As per City’s official website, de Jong recently commented on the club’s success in the 2011 FA Cup final, as a fierce strike from Yaya Toure helped the Manchester side claim a 1-0 win over Stoke City.
While discussing the highlights of his career such as turning out for the Netherlands in the 2010 World Cup final, stated that the highest point in his career was City's FA Cup final victory in 2011.
He added: "That (FA Cup glory in 2011) was the pinnacle, because that laid the success and foundation for what City are now.”
A year on from the club’s FA Cup victory, de Jong was involved in the build-up of Sergio Aguero's title-winning strike which saw City be crowned champions of England for the first time since 1968.
He added: “I remember clearly the moment we won at Wembley against Stoke, and before that, the semi-final against Manchester United - the pure joy from the fans, I saw grown men crying, kids going up and down, everyone lost their minds.”
Despite playing a key role during the club’s renaissance in the early 2010's, a lack of playing time during the 2011/12 campaign saw the Dutchman opt to leave the club in the summer of 2012 for AC Milan.
However, having now called time on his career, de Jong added: “I’ve just come back into the City family again. I’m happy to be here.”
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