Millwall confirm stunning Tim Cahill return

TIM Cahill has completed a sensational return to Millwall – almost 14 years after leaving the club. 

Cahill, 38, passed his medical on Monday and has signed a deal until the end of the season after leaving Melbourne City in December.

The signing of Cahill, who played 251 times and scored 57 goals for Millwall between 1998 and 2004, will thrill Lions fans.

Neil Harris was first linked with a move for his former team-mate earlier this month.

Discussions continued between the parties, and Cahill also spoke to Nottingham Forest last week about a move to the City Ground. QPR were also linked with offering him a deal.

Cahill was said to be “assessing his options” on Friday, before he decided on an emotional return to the club that gave him his chance in English football.

He left Sydney as a 17-year-old in 1997 before earning a deal and making his Lions debut in a 2-1 defeat to Bournemouth in May 1998.

Cahill played in the final of the Football League Trophy the following season, as Millwall lost 1-0 to Wigan, before in 2000-01 he scored nine league goals to help his side win promotion to the second tier.

Australian international Cahill scored three goals – including the semi-final winner against Sunderland at Old Trafford – as Millwall reached the FA Cup final in 2004 for the first time in their history.

His last Lions appearance was in the final, a 3-0 defeat to Manchester United at the Millennium Stadium.

Cahill joined Everton that summer, helping them to qualify for the Champions League in 2005 before he left in 2012 after 68 goals in 278 appearances.

He went on to play in the United States and China before moving back to Australia in August 2016.

Cahill hasn’t played since coming on as a substitute in Melbourne City’s 2-1 win at Newcastle Jets on December 2.

He had been keen to secure a club to aid his bid to be part of Australia’s squad for the World Cup in Russia this year. Cahill scored twice against Syria in a qualifying play-off tie in October, before featuring against Honduras as the Socceroos sealed their spot in the finals.

Cahill has scored 50 goals in 104 games for his country.

Bert van Marwijk, who led the Netherlands to the World Cup final in 2010 when they lost to Spain, was recently appointed Australia boss and Cahill knows he needs first-team football to impress the new manager.

Cahill has been keeping up his fitness since his last competitive appearance, posting images on his social media accounts of training sessions, and will likely need to play for the under-23s before being considered for first-team selection.

He will wear the number 7 shirt for the club.

John Kelly