Arsenal make Oleksandr Zinchenko captain on anniversary of Ukraine-Russia conflict

Oleksandr Zinchenko in action against former club Manchester City in the FA Cup in January 2023.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Arsenal have made Oleksandr Zinchenko captain for today's Premier League game against Leicester City as a mark of respect on the anniversary of the Ukraine-Russia conflict.

Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, 2022 and Friday marked a year since the war started.

Many fans on social media were surprised to see Zinchenko named as captain instead of midfielder Martin Odegaard when the line-ups were announced for the game at the King Power Stadium.

But the Premier League leaders said in a statement: "Alex Zinchenko is our captain today, as a mark of respect and love on the first anniversary of the conflict in Ukraine."

Zinchenko has impressed at Arsenal since signing from Manchester City last summer.

The versatile defender has played 52 games for Ukraine since 2015, scoring eight goals.

Although he came through the youth system at Shakhtar Donetsk, Zinchenko played for a season at Russian side FC Ufa before joining City in 2016.

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Weekend editor

Ben Hayward is Weekend Editor for FourFourTwo. A European football writer with over 15 years’ experience, he has covered games all over the world - including three World Cups, several Champions League finals, Euros, Copa América - and has spent much of that time in Spain. He currently divides his time between Barcelona and London.