Yuri Valentinovich Zhirkov
(; born 20 August 1983 in Tambov
, Soviet Union
) is a Russian footballer who plays for English Premier League side Chelsea F.C.
and the Russian national team
. He can play anywhere on the left flank or as an attacking left-back.
Yuri Valentinovich Zhirkov was born in Tambov
, on 20 August 1983. His father, Valentin Ivanovich Zhirkov worked at the "Revtrud
" factory and his mother was a postwoman. Yuri was the second child in the family. The family lived in poverty, struggling to buy basic goods such as food and clothes. He had to help his family grow vegetables during the summer so that his family could have adequate food during the winter. His first coach was Valery Sharapov who signed him for the Tambov Regional Children and Youth Sports School.
Zhirkov started his career at FC Spartak Tambov
where he scored 26 goals in 74 games playing as a winger before leaving for CSKA Moscow
Zhirkov joined CSKA Moscow
in January 2004. His first official game was on 7 March 2004 in the Russian Super Cup
against Spartak Moscow
. CSKA's 3–1 victory gave Yuri his first trophy. Zhirkov made his debut in the Champions League
on 27 July against Neftchi Baku PFC
. He also appeared in the third qualifying round against Rangers F.C.
Zhirkov won the 2004–05 UEFA Cup
with CSKA, and scored in the final as the team beat Portuguese side Sporting
3–1.His goal against Hamburger SV
in the UEFA Champions......