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Returning Eduardo has admitted that he's been looking forward to pulling on the red and white of his adopted country more than that of his club...

Arsenal hitman Eduardo da Silva made his long-awaited return from injury on Tuesday evening, putting in a 45 minute shift for Arsenal's reserves as they took on their Portsmouth counterparts.

The striker has been out of action since February, when he suffered a broken leg and dislocated ankle in the early moments of the Gunners' clash with Birmingham City.

Club boss Arsene Wenger is worried about the mental factors yet to be negotiated by the 25-year-old as he starts to step up the intensity view a view to a complete comeback.

However, the Brazilian-born Croatia international is staying ultra-positive and even hopes to feature on the international stage as soon as February.

Sky Sports quote him as telling Croat newspaper Sportske Novosti: "I can't wait to play my first match in a Croatia shirt.

"I think it could be in February when we play Romania.

"During my ten months on the sidelines, it was playing for Croatia I missed most."

Slaven Bilic's men are currently lagging behind England - who they pipped to the European Championship which were missed by crocked Eduardo - in the race for World Cup 2010.

Eduardo was a key part of Vatreni surge towards Austria and Switzerland and his return will be a real boost. They play a friendly against Romania in February, before tackling qualifying encounters against Andorra, Ukraine and Belarus during the rest of 2009.

Greg Ptolomey, Goal.com

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