Zhirkov signs for Anzhi Makhachkala

MOSCOW - Russia and Chelsea winger Yuri Zhirkov has signed a four-year contract with Anzhi Makhachkala, the Russian Premier League side said on Saturday.

Zhirkov, who joined Chelsea from CSKA Moscow two years ago, returns to Russia after struggling to break into the first team at Stamford Bridge.

"I'm very happy to be here in Makhachkala," Zhirkov, who turns 28 later this month, told the crowd after being indroduced before Anzhi's home league match against Tom Tomsk on Saturday.

"I hope to make my Anzhi debut in our next game against Spartak Moscow [next Sunday]."

The versatile left-sided player becomes the latest high-profile signing by the club from the volatile North Caucasus region.

Former Brazil full-back Roberto Carlos signed a two-and-a-half year deal with Anzhi, backed by Russian billionaire Suleiman Kerimov, in February.