The Brazilian goal-scoring legend Zico, who now manages Yuri Zhirkov’s old team CSKA Moscow, has said that losing Zhirkov is as bad as Man Utd losing Ronaldo or AC Milan losing Kaka!
When it was decided that Zhirkov would become the most expensive Russian ever, Zico lamented that his team would find it hard to live without the wizard winger. He said: “Currently in football there is no player who is able to replace Zhirkov.
“Zhirkov to CSKA is like Cristiano Ronaldo to Manchester United or Kaka to AC Milan.
“As we know, both players moved to Real Madrid and I think their former clubs will be seriously concerned about how they will do in the future without their star players.
“Remember how Manchester looked last season when Cristiano Ronaldo was missing. The attack of the team looked much weaker,” Zico concluded.
Zhirkov certainly comes to Chelsea very highly regarded, which was hopefully borne out by his great debut goal against AC Milan on Wednesday night. But despite his renown (he was one of the 30 nominees for last years Ballon D’Or) he doesn’t actually score many goals, but when he does they are usually crackers!
He had a goal against Hamburg named as the Goal of the Tournament in the 2006 Champions League. He also scored in the 2005 UEFA Cup Final, which was won by CSKA Moscow, against Sporting Lisbon.
So, despite his tally of just 15 goals in 139 games for CSKA, he is rightly famous for making goals for others, but still having a go himself now and again. And, as Chelsea are destined to be playing with two strikers up front this season, we could find that Zhirkov could be the best provider of the season.
As good as Malouda and Kalou were on the left wing, you could never say they were consistent in getting the ball into the box in a pinpoint fashion. Hopefully Zhirkov will change all that and we will start scoring for fun and become the entertaining team that we all want to see!