Ex-Chelsea boss AVB: Yuri Zhirkov left me a bottle of Vodka after I sold him

Yuri Zhirkov Russia

Former Chelsea and Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas has revealed the thank you present left for him by Yuri Zhirkov

Andre Villas-Boas has become adept at landing on his feet after recent sackings, and is currently enjoying a good start to life in Russia with Zenit St Petersburg.

The Russians are very taken with the former Spurs and Chelsea boss, and the 36-year-old has given an extensive interview with Zenit's website.

He did though attempt to keep his comments on his previous clubs to a minimum, preferring to discuss what makes him tick and his football philosophies.

He recounted one unusual tale on  when he sold Russian midfielder Yuri Zhirkov from Chelsea, ceding to the £18 million man's wishes to let him return to his native country after AVB took over in 2011.

"It was his decision, I can not be responsible for decisions of others." He went onto reveal that for granting Zhirkov's exit request he was given a bottle of vodka as a leaving present:

"I took it to Portugal and is in my house. I was surprised by the positive because we only worked together a few weeks. I saw him as a left-back but the truth is that he liked to play in the center. I played him in the center in some pre-season games and he played very well in that position. Therefore only had positive impressions of him."

AVB added that he felt his relationships with journalists were 'very good', and that he does not let criticism affect him.

The manager was sacked by both Chelsea and then Tottenham after short spells and wisely decided to turn his back on English football.

"Why not? Zenit are a big club. Zenit wants to win and take a step forward. So when it happened my interest was immediate. I want to win titles and Zenit gives me that opportunity.

"Initially I had the idea of waiting until the end of the season and think there next step but did not want to pass up the opportunity to come here. So in the end I was extremely pleased with my decision. I'm very motivated and always wanted to test my skills in different leagues."

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