Wed 21 July 2021 | 13:30

Top facts about Yuri Zhirkov, the Russian Ronaldinho

Yuri Zhirkov is one of the football players who has had a stellar career as part of the Russian team. The left winger and left back made his professional debut for Tambov in 2001 and made his first international appearance for Russia in 2005. Read on to find out more facts about Yuri Zhirkov.

In addition to playing for the Russian national team, Yuri Zhirkov has also played in the major teams of the Russian Premier League. As a left-sided player, Zhirkov could play full-back or winger. He began his career at local club Spartak Tambov before joining top-flight CSKA Moscow in 2004.

Zhirkov career at


did not work out from the very beginning as he received an injury that left him out of the matches for a long time. He received little playing time, often leaving as a substitute or playing in insignificant matches.

Zhirkov's career for the Russian national team began in 2006 in a match with the Italians. Since then, Yuri was constantly involved in the games of the national team.

Top facts about Yuri Zhirkov:

Zhirkov has two victories in the Russian championship, the third place in the 2008 European Championship, the 2008 Golden Ball nomination from France Football, and the 2008 Russian Football Player of the Year title. In this article, you will read some interesting facts about Yuri Zhirkov, the famous football star.

Yuri Zhirkov Early life

Yuri Valentinovich Zhirkov was born on August 20, 1983, in the city of Tambov, meaning that

Yuri Zhirkov’s age

is 38. Speaking about

Yuri Zhirkov’s parents

, it should be mentioned that his father, Valentin Ivanovich, was a laborer in a factory, and his mother was a postwoman.

Speaking about

Yuri Zhirkov’s childhood

, it is worth mentioning that Yuri was the second child in the family. They were so poor that even basic goods such as clothing and food were difficult for them to obtain. Yuri dropped out of school to help his family.

The first fact about Yuri Zhirkov is how he got into football. At the age of 11, he became interested in football and decided to build his future in this popular sport. Yuri's family was poor, and Yuri did not have the opportunity to practice.

Yuri’s family had to grow vegetables in the summer to make a living and earn money. Yuri also helped his parents with this. They were a large family. Their family consisted of 6 people. Due to poverty, this large family lived in a one-room apartment.

He had to find a space outside the house to practice so as not to disturb other family members. During those years, Yuri moderated his personality and acquired the necessary skills to enter major sports.

Yuri Zhirkov personal life

In 2008, Zhirkov married the beautiful Russian model Inna Gracheva. Now he has 3 children. His eldest son, Dimitri, was born in 2008. According to Yuri, Dimitri will also become a famous footballer.

Two years later his daughter, Milan, was born. This girl was born in London. In 2015, her second son was born. Yuri shares his family photos on his Instagram page.

Inna Zhirkov was born and raised in Kaliningrad. According to her, she entered the modeling profession at the age of 14. Before marriage, she participated in many beauty contests and modeling projects.

She is reported to have graduated from the International Humanitarian Institute in Kaliningrad with a degree in Social Services, Culture and Tourism.

Among pets, Ina prefers dogs. He has a terrier called Porsche, which Yuri gave him as a gift.

In 2006, Ina wanted to take part in the Miss Russia pageant, but was forced to leave the project due to illness. Well, next year she moved to the capital.

Where Ina and Yuri first met is another interesting fact about Yuri Zhirkov's life that we want to mention. The first meeting of this model and famous football player took place at a party of one of his friends.

After that, they met each other in the cafe and these dates lasted for a year. Inna said that she was surprised that the young man she was dating was a famous footballer. After those dates, they could not forget each other and in February 2008 the lovers reunited. Soon after, they got married.

Two years after the birth of her daughter, in 2012, Ina received the title of "Lady of Russia" - beautiful mothers from all over the country took part in the competition.

Inna, in an interview about her personal life, made some interesting points about their personal life. She said, “After Milana was born, I found a box under my pillow with a ring on it. In fact, I was a little surprised; because Yuri usually gave more standard and mundane gifts and then it turned out that it was not a simple ring, but engraved on the ring with the phrase "Thank you for the children you gave me"! My husband himself invented the design.

Another interesting fact about Yuri Zhirkov is that his wife and children went to Moscow from Kaliningrad to see Yuri at the Confederations Cup in Moscow. "I hope we can see Yuri for at least an hour a day and come to his hotel, Of course we will go to the competitions," Inna said.

After the birth of their third child, Yuri gave his wife a new large space in the studio. Like any other grandparent, Yuri's parents love their grandchildren. This is the next interesting fact about

Yuri Zhirkov’s personal life

that we want to talk about! According to Inna in an interview, due to their living conditions, they had to travel between Moscow and St. Petersburg.

Certainly, all these travels with 3 small children were not easy at all. The interesting thing is that they did not travel by plane; they went by train. Because their kids loved to travel by train more and they feel more comfortable. On the other hand, Yuri's parents helped Yuri and Inna a lot, and sometimes they came and talked to their grandchildren and spent time entertaining them.

The next

fact about Yuri Zhirkov

is his car accidents. Yuri has not had a comfortable life and is facing many problems. During the player's football career, news of Yuri Zhirkov's accident was published in the media twice and worried his fans.

The first incident occurred in January 2005 in Tambov. Zhirkov was injured while driving on a high-speed track. Fortunately, there were no serious injuries due to the airbags. On December 18, 2008, Zhirkov had another accident in Kaliningrad. He survived the accident.

The charity works of footballers have always been interesting to people. Yuri and his wife are no exception and do a lot of charity work to help those in need. Today, they are involved in philanthropy, helping orphanages, and organizing events to attract art sponsors.

Yuri Zhirkov professional career

The way he started his work as a football player, is another fact about Yuri Zhirkov that we want to talk about. Yuri Zhirkov started his career in the

Russian national team

in 2006 against

the Italians

. Since then, if Yuri was not injured, he was constantly involved in national team games.

The crown of success for the national team, as well as for many players, was the European Championship in 2008, where the Russian team lost to the future winners - the Spanish national team - and won a bronze medal.

Zhirkov, Arshavin, and Pavlyuchenko were the main builders of Russian football victory in Europe. At the end of the championship, Zhirkov joined the iconic team of the entire tournament and was nominated for the golden ball.


fact about Yuri Zhirkov

to note is how he was selected as a halfback. Yuri Zhirkov's biography is full of ups and downs. In 1994 he entered the Revtrud Sports School, where Valery Vasilyevich Sharapov was the first male coach. According to the results of the first tournament in which Yuri participated, he was recognized as the best halfback.

One more important fact about Yuri Zhirkov is that Yuri reached the professional level in 2000 after many efforts. During the first season, Yuri played only four minutes and competed in two matches. Another interesting point to note here is that the following year started more successfully; because in the first match Yuri Zhirkov played well for the team and also scored a goal.

Everything went well for Yuri and he became one of the team's top scorers. Another important fact we want to say about Yuri Zhirkov is that, he received the title of the best player of the hope Cup and attracted everyone's attention. After several comments, Zhirkov signed a contract with

CSKA Moscow


Yuri Zhirkov club career

Zhirkov started his career at Spartak Tambov, where he scored 26 goals in 74 matches playing as a winger before leaving for CSKA Moscow.

Yuri made a huge contribution to all of CSKA's victories, winning the champion of Russia twice; he raised the Cup of Russia over his head four times and became the owner of the Super Cup of Russia.

After such momentous events, Yuri joined the London Chelsea team. During the two years of stay there, the team was awarded several landmark awards. But the contribution of the Russian football player was hardly decisive.


On 6 July 2009, Zhirkov joined Chelsea on a four-year contract worth 18 million, more than the 15 million that Arsenal paid for Andre Andrea Arshavin in January 2009. This contract made Zhirkov the most expensive Russian footballer.

His first game at Chelsea was a friendly game against Milan. In this game he showed a good performance and managed to score a goal in this game.

He was one of Chelsea's best players in the round of 16 of the Champions League against

Inter Milan

, who blocked several scoring opportunities and failed them. But Chelsea lost 1-0 and 3-1 overall that night.

Unfortunately, Yuri Zhirkov suffered an injury while playing for Chelsea and missed many games.

In an interview with the Chelsea website, he said, "I'm with Chelsea until 2013 and I hope to play an important role in this club. After a few disappointing months in treatment, it has been very gratifying to be back with my teammates. I play an important role in the team."

Yuri Zhirkov, who joined Chelsea from CSKA Moscow in 2009, said he did not expect to be out for long.

"I stayed away from football more than I expected. But now I'm back and I want to show everyone that I can be a useful player for Chelsea Coming back and playing against


made a great impression on me.

In 2011, Zhirkov left Chelsea to Anji. He demonstrated a good performance, reminding everyone of his past brilliant career. Later, he was awarded a bronze place in the national championship and became a finalist of the Russian Cup.


On 14 August 2011, it was announced that Yuri Zhirkov had left for


in the Russian Premier League at a cost of around 13.2 million. Yuri Zhirkov signed a 4-year contract with the Russian team. He scored his first goal for the team in the game against Amkar Perm on October 29, 2011.


On August 6, 2013, Anzhi listed their entire team for sale as they announced their plans to rebuild the business, focusing on youth development.

Denisov, Alexander Kokorin and Yuri Zhirkov left the team on 15 August, 2013. They all joined Dynamo Moscow. The salaries of these players in this team were never announced.

He played 14 league matches in his first season, scoring 3 goals: one in a 2–0 win against Krylia Sovetov Samara on his 29 September debut, and two in a 4–2 win over former club CSKA on 9 March.


On 26 January 2016, FC Zenit Saint Petersburg announced that they signed a two-year contract with Yuri Zhirkov. If Zenit and Dynamo would be not able to agree on a transfer fee during the winter 2015–16 transfer window, he would have joined Zenit in July 2016 as a free agent, after his Dynamo contract expired. However, the two teams agreed on transfer fee and he joined Zenit on 30 January.

Another important

fact about Yuri Zhirkov

professional life is related to his conflict with Leonid Slotsky. In the Russian national team, Yuri argued with Leonid Slotsky, and as a result, he lost the 2016 European Championship in France.

The head coach of the national team was not satisfied with the player's free perception of the team's tactics during the game. In addition, an Achilles tendon injury made his job difficult. But during the year Yuri Zhirkov managed to take part in five friendly matches. In the match against Stade de France, Yuri played well and managed to score a goal.

One more interesting fact about Yuri Zhirkov that must be mentioned here is that Yuri Zhirkov, after continuous and unremitting efforts in his path, is now called "Russian Ronaldinho.”

Ronaldinho is a unique football star and he is very popular among the people of the world. It is a great honor for Yuri now that the Russian people liken Yuri to Ronaldinho. He has attracted the attention of several major European clubs.

Yuri Zhirkov international career

Yuri Zhirkov has played for the Russian national team since 2005 and finally decided to retire after the Russians finished their work in the 2018 World Cup (Croatia was eliminated in the quarter-finals). Of course, he continued to play club football. Yuri Zhirkov played 87 times for the Russian national team and scored two goals.

Yuri Zhirkov mentioned distance from family, fatigue, and pressure from national and club games, as the main reasons for saying goodbye to national games.

Despite the injuries and problems he faced, Yuri Zhirkov did not give up training and prepared for the Euro 2020 tournament.

Zhirkov wanted to take part in the tournament as a defender for the national team of Russia. But unfortunately, he missed the rest of the Euro 2020 competition due to an injury in the match against


. Due to the severity of the injury, the coach decided to allow him to leave the camp. In the near future, Yuri Zhirkov will begin rehabilitation at a specialized clinic in Moscow.

He was selected to the Russian squads for Euro 2012, the 2014 FIFA World Cup, the 2018 FIFA World Cup, where Russia hosted the tournament, and Euro 2020.

Yuri Zhirkov Honors

Yuri Zhirkov has made a huge contribution to all of CSKA's victories. He won the Russian Cup twice, the Russian Cup four times and the Russian Super Cup four times. The highlight of his career was winning the 2005 UEFA Cup.

Yuri Zhirkov was directly involved in the team's actions during the tournament, and in the final, he ended the game in favor of the Army men with a goal in the 65th minute.

Yuri Zhirkov has won many honors during his career. Of note is the 92 national games in which Yuri played from 2005 to 2019. He has also played in the Russian Premier League since 2015.

An interesting fact about Yuri Zhirkov is that Yuri Zhirkov is the 122nd most famous Russian people.

In general, Yuri Zhirkov ranks as the 23710th most popular famous person, and the 763rd most popular soccer player of all time.

Quotes about Yuri Zhirkov

Many celebrities talked about Yuri Zhirkov. Some of them criticized Yuri Zhirkov and others praised him and called him a football star. In this section, we have two quotes, one from Carlo Ancelotti and the other from his wife.

Carlo Ancelotti commented about this football player, “Only once in my life have I felt like I needed a psychiatrist. I was looking at Yuri Zhirkov, but all I could see was a rib-eye steak. Perfectly grilled, juicy, smoking, medium rare. I looked him in the eye and suddenly I was starving.”

One of Ancelotti’s first signings as a Chelsea manager was Yuri Zhirkov, dubbed the Russian Ronaldinho. A ritual in Chelsea is that a new signing has to perform a song on the karaoke night and it was time for Zhirkov to sing during the pre-season through the US. He continued, “A Russian midfielder with a host of talents and just one shortcoming: he can’t sing. He just makes a lot of noise. But now he was going to have to sing. It was his moment. If you want to join the team, it’s not enough just to sign a contract.”

When asked from Yuri's wife, about how Yuri would react if he were criticized, she said, “He definitely reacts to the criticism. He sometimes accepts criticism, but sometimes the criticism is insulting. For example, one day Yuri may be injected or have a problem and cannot walk properly. People do not know what Yuri's problem is, but they criticize him.

But despite his problems, Yuri enters the field and fights for victory. Yuri is very hard-working and does not think about himself at all. He doesn’t not say that my foot hurts, I better not play! For the sake of his team, he forgets his injury.

Yuri Zhirkov social media


Yuri Zhirkov social media

, it should be mentioned that he has a page on Instagram (


). He has more than 99k followers and shares photos of his personal life, his children, his wife, and so on. We can see the comments of other football stars under Yuri’s posts.

Yuri Zhirkov body measurement


Yuri Zhirkov body measurement

, it should be noted that despite being 37 years old, he is 180 cm and weighs 76 kg.

Yuri Zhirkov Net Worth

Professional soccer players can receive plenty of money. But contract sizes depend on several different characteristics, including the player’s quality and skills.

Yuri Zhirkov’s net worth

was estimated to be around $3 million in 2020.

Yuri Zhirkov also has a beach house in Kaliningrad. Yuri's house is 15 minutes away from the sea. Yuri Zhirkov and his family spend the summer at this house. While Yuri Zhirkov was playing for Zenit, they were building a house in the Moscow region. Also they had an apartment in St. Petersburg. So they lived in three cities.

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source: SportMob

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