Chelsea are said to want to give CSKA Moscow near on £19million for this Russian on the recommendation of outgoing manager Guus Hiddink, but who exactly is the man dubbed ‘The Russian Ronaldinho’, Yuri Zhirkov? The Transfer Tavern asked Football Fancast columnist The New Voice of Football to investigate.
Unlike the ‘will he, wont he’ deadline-day drama with Andrey Arshavin, who apparently knew how to ask for a six-figure salary (shame about the tax Andrey), but couldn’t remember his four-figure pin number. Thus delaying his payment to his former employers to ensure his safe release from their shackles. The transfer of Zhirkov to Chelsea should be, well a positively quiet affair to say the least, if it does indeed happen.
The Premiership club were linked with 25-year-old Zhirkov, within days of Russian coach Hiddink becoming the interim custodian of Stamford Bridge. The Dutch ‘Tactistica’ apparently telling Abramovic that the man hailed as the Kremlins very own ‘Dazzledinho’ was the player to provide the missing creative spark at Chelsea.
The latest reports suggesting Blues chief Roman Abramovic has intervened in the transfer and had a ‘quiet word’ to help the deal along. Despite other reports saying Zhirkov ‘dreams’ of playing for Barcelona in La Liga.
Roman having taken Guus’ advice is prepared to shell out the best part of £19million to lure Zhirkov to West London apparantly. Hopefully, without the amateur dramatics that saw Pavlyuchenko move to Spurs or the full Hollywood production of the Arshavin affair. Given Roman’s connections back home (wonder what a quiet word is in Russia). The question is though, what will Chelsea get for all those roubles? The Russian Ronaldinho they say?
Well certainly has a touch of the “Dazzledinho’s” about him, with Zhirkov in that video also dispelling the myth that Manchester City striker Jo, can’t hit a cows arse with a banjo, by creating some very big banjos to hit very small cows backsides with. Jo couldn’t miss and probably earned his Eastlands payday on the back of the Russian’s trickery.
Not as prolific as Ronaldinho, with just 15 goals in 139 Russian Premier League games for CSKA, Zhirkov has the added bonus of being able to slot in as a left-back and does look to do what Hiddink said he could and create opportunities for others. Yet to score for the Russian national side, the tricky winger was named in the EURO 2008 Team of the Tournament and has 30 caps to his name.
So there is no doubting the quality of Zhirkov, from what I’ve seen the Russian looks like a dangerous player. But will the tricky winger, who is full of Eastern promise, prove to be worth £19million if signed by Chelsea and Fly in the Premier League? Or will Zhirkov fail to bring his A-game from the Kremlin and Die on his backside like a modern day Sergei Rebrov?
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