Ryan Taylor says "there are no words" to describe in the League Cup - his first game for 26 months.
He played 90 minutes of Wednesday's fourth-round win at Etihad Stadium.
"To put those boots and that shirt back on against the champions and for us to give a performance like that is a dream come true," he told BBC Newcastle.
The season before his injury nightmare began in a Europa League tie against Atromitos, Taylor played 31 Premier League games as the Magpies finished in fifth position.
In total, he has scored 10 goals in 95 appearances since arriving as part of the deal that took Charles N'Zogbia to Wigan in 2007.
As part of his rehab, the right-sided player has been used in a variety of roles by Newcastle manager Alan Pardew.
|"Like a new signing"|
|Of the squad named for their League Cup game with Manchester City, there were 12 who had never played for Newcastle the last time Ryan Taylor did.|
"Lots of people have played a part and the people who stood by me deserve more credit than I do," explained Taylor.
"The manager's had me scouting, watching training, learning new things about the game.
"There are no words I can think of, from the medical team to the fans, I can't thank the football club enough."