Richard Dunne admitted his "respect" for Manchester City and their fans stopped him from celebrating his first goal for Aston Villa in the 1-1 draw at Villa Park.
The central defender spent nine years with City before making the £6million switch to Villa five weeks ago after the arrival of Kolo Toure and Joleon Lescott at Eastlands.
Dunne said: "You have to remember Man City looked after me for a long time. I enjoyed my time at City and respect the fans and everyone there so it was the right thing to do for me."
Dunne powered home a header from Stephen Warnock's centre to break the deadlock but he was content to trot back to the centre circle and was applauded by the City fans for his actions.
A second half goal from Craig Bellamy earned City a share of the spoils.
Dunne added: "It just seems to happen when you are up against a former club. People seem to score. I don't have a celebration for when I score. Usually if I score, it's a surprise. I don't know when it is going to happen.
"But, as much as it was nice to score my first goal here in front of the Villa fans, I still have to remember how Manchester City have helped me throughout my career.
"It gave us a good start in the game and unfortunately we couldn't go on to get the second.
"But City are a top side who are going to challenge for the top four this season and, for us to play as well as we did, is a good sign for us."