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Confirmed: Payet returns to his former club

Dimitri Payet has been linked with a January move from West Ham to Marseille – but on Saturday he will be in Lille.

The Ligue 1 club are also in the throes of a takeover, which is expected to dramatically increase their spending power, but the France attacker is in town to help Lille celebrate a Coupe de France encounter with AS Excelsior.

He will take a ceremonial kick off before the encounter at Stade Pierre Mauroy, which pits Lille against a side that hails from Reunion Island, some 9,500 kilometres away.

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Payet hails from the island, which lies in the Indian Ocean nearly 200 miles to the east of Madagascar but has become its best-known footballing export and, along with the fact it was the first place the euro became legal tender, one of its great claims to fame.

A note on Lille's Facebook page reads: "COME BACK! He will be return to Stade Pierre Mauroy to give the ceremonial kick off to Lille - Excelsior. No, we've not forgotten you Dimitri Payet."

The 29-year-old spent two seasons at Lille after signing from Saint-Etienne and scored 19 goals and claimed 30 assists over the course of 95 games. 

Since moving to England, he has struck 18 times and produced 25 assists in only 66 outings with West Ham, where he has established himself as a key figure.