With Ajax, AC Milan and Roma, Urby Emanuelson trained and played with some of the best footballers of the modern era.
Wednesday’s latest new signing counts himself lucky enough to have lined up alongside the likes of Luis Suarez, Alessandro Nesta, Clarence Seedorf, Francesco Totti and Ashley Cole in his career.
Although he recalls fondly playing for three of the biggest clubs in Europe, Emanuelson is looking forward to a new challenge with the Owls.
The former Dutch international, snapped up on a free transfer 48 hours ago, told The Star: “It was a great experience to play for some big clubs and with some of the best players in the world. I’m really happy that I achieved that.
“I hope now I can bring my experience to Sheffield and show everyone my qualities.”
Emanuelson, who started his career at Ajax, struggled to command a regular first-team place at Hellas Verona last season and the Italian club released him over the summer.
“Every player wants to play and that hasn’t happened for me in the last two years,” he admitted. “It was a hard, difficult time.
“But I’ve joined a new team now so hopefully I can put that behind me.
“I have a point to prove to myself. I know that I can do better and I will give my all for the team.
“I want to repay the people who have shown confidence in me. I want to make my team and the fans happy.”
The 30-year-old brings versatility to Wednesday. He can play anywhere down the left-hand side but boss Carlos Carvalhal is likely to use his qualities at left-back.
Emanuelson said he learned of the Championship club’s interest in his services last week.
He said: “There were some other teams who were interested but Sheffield were really direct. It felt good because other teams were saying ‘we will have to wait and see and have patience’.
“Sheffield were really direct and that’s what I need at the moment. I like the project that is going on here. It fits me well.
“I needed a club who has confidence in my quality. From day one, it felt good.”
He trained with his new teammates for the first time on Tuesday.
“I like the way the manager wants to play and the goal the club have to get back into the Premier League,” said Emanuelson, who spent time on loan at Fulham in 2013.
“The way we work here suits me which is why I think it was a good decision to come.”
Emanuelson could go straight into the Owls squad for their home tussle with newly-promoted Wigan Athletic this weekend.
“I haven’t played so many games over the last year but I’ve been training all summer so I don’t think I’m too far behind the rest of the guys,” he said.