Home to roost: Andriy Voronin returns to his beloved Bundesliga after a two-year hiatus
Home to roost: Andriy Voronin returns to his beloved Bundesliga after a two-year hiatus


Munich - On the surface, it might sound strange to hear a Ukrainian talking about a return to Germany as his "homecoming" but, as bundesliga.com probes deeper into the words of 33-year-old striker Andriy Voronin, it actually makes a lot of sense. After all, home comforts are something we can all relate to, and it's no different for the well-travelled striker who, in many ways, is returning to his roots having signed on loan for Bundesliga newcomers Fortuna Düsseldorf.

Düsseldorf hard to resist

Having caught the eye in the youth ranks at Borussia Mönchengladbach, the chance to play under former mentor and current Fortuna boss Norbert Meier proved a big pull: "[He] took me from the youth team to the first team", said Voronin. "Under him, I made my Bundesliga debut".

Voronin spent the last two seasons at Russian Premier League side Dynamo Moscow but, although captain, wasn't always happy at the club: "There's no doubt I wanted to leave Russia. Differences with the trainer meant I wasn't playing any more". So when Fortuna moved for their man, Voronin jumped at the chance: "I just had the feeling that the coach and players knew what they were doing", said Düsseldorf''s newcomer.

The former Ukraine international, who bowed out on home soil at Euro 2012, still has his feet firmly on the ground despite a whirlwind 48 hours, and over the next few days should have enough time to get to know his new team-mates - not that a man of his experience needs time to adapt to German football. Fortuna are his fifth station on the Bundesliga train after Borussia Mönchengladbach, 1. FC Köln, Bayer 04 Leverkusen and Hertha BSC Berlin. He scored 48 goals in 145 appearances in Germany's top flight, with his most recent spell at Hertha proving to be a particular highlight.

On loan from Premier League side Liverpool during 2008/09, Voronin struck up a potent partnership with Marco Pantelic, scoring eleven times as the capital club came within touching distance of the Bundesliga title. For him, "the Bundesliga is the best league in the world, and Düsseldorf are part of it. That's a great incentive."

Battle to beat the drop

Those in charge at Fortuna are happy to have added another weapon to their arsenal, with executive director Wolf Werner and head coach Meier very much in the market for an experienced goal scorer: "We're very pleased to have signed a striker like Andriy Voronin, who has already enjoyed great success in his career".

The season-long loanee sees staying up as a great "challenge", but is also relishing the chance to play at "home" again: "I've really missed the electric atmosphere, the fans and the jam-packed stadiums at Bundesliga games."

'GOAL! The Bundesliga magazine' will spend three minutes with Andriy Voronin on this week's edition of the show.