David Carney described his first day back at Sydney FC as like "playing with the Socceroos again" after completing his transfer from Newcastle Jets.
The 32-year-old signed with the Sky Blues and undertook his first training session on Wednesday less than 24 hours after gaining a release from the final few months of his Jets contract.
It brings to an end a drawn-out saga over his future, with Carney admitting he's had his heart on returning to Sydney – his first A-League club – for some time.
Carney argued his football was going flat in the Hunter and blamed a lack of quality in Newcastle's squad.
The winger believes reuniting with coach Graham Arnold, who he worked with at the Socceroos, can reinvigorate his career.
"I've worked with Arnie before and he wants me to play on the wing. He likes his wingers coming in and getting in the pockets.
"That's what I did today and it was good," Carney told reporters.
"It was just a great feeling to be out there today amongst the team, just the way training was it reminded me of being back playing with the Socceroos again.
"I feel compared to Newcastle, it's two very different sides. It suits me better. I like to keep the ball and being at Sydney I'm sure it will help me get to that next level.
Carney added: "With Newcastle, the quality of players compared to here, you can get flat and here it gives me that next step to play with better players and strive to be amongst them and start to enjoy my football again."
Carney has signed a deal until the end of the 2016-17 season and could come straight into the side for Friday night's clash with Adelaide United.
Sydney's upcoming AFC Champions League (ACL) campaign and their A-League title aspirations inspired Carney to return to the Harbour City.
"With the ACL coming up, the depth we've got, it's a good balance to go into both [competitions] now," he said.
"To get in that environment again, the winning feeling and the ambition to go forward with the club, probably the biggest club in Australia, I want to be a part of that.
"I've played in [the ACL] before with Sydney, they are great games and with the squad we've got I feel like we can compete in that league."