You’d be forgiven if you thought Andrey Arshavin was done with football. After all, we’ve barely heard a peep about him over the last few years. But no, the former Arsenal fan favorite and ex-Russia captain is still kicking, albeit in the unheralded Kazakhstan Premier League, and he turned back the clock this weekend with a wonder goal that will leave Gunners fans emotionally unstable.
Now 35 years old and playing for little-known Kairat, Arshavin proved he’s still got some moves, undressing two defenders at the edge of the box before producing a sublime chip over the goalkeeper in a 3-1 win over Taraz.
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It was Arshavin’s sixth goal in 18 games this season, which is his best single-season tally since 2011, his last full campaign with Arsenal.
Remember how great Arshavin was? It wasn’t that, that long ago. When Arsenal bought him for a then club-record £15 million in 2008, Arshavin was one of the most exciting talents around and instantly made a big impact. His game-winning goal against Barcelona, and the epic, four-goal performance against Liverpool at Anfield still reverberate around North London.
But it all sort of fell apart rather quickly by the 2011/12 season, as his match fitness and work rate repeatedly came into question and Arshavin fell out of favor with both club and country. Arshavin never seemed to fully realize his potential, but we’re still seeing flashes of it now. Sorry for the reminder, Arsenal fans.