I am very glad that I have extended my contract with Zenit as I had a year left on my current contract, but we decided to deal with it in advance. We agreed on everything very quickly I knew immediately that I wanted to stay at Zenit and it was clear the club wanted me.
A long-term contract for me is a motivating factor, we were champions last season and we will soon kick-off our UEFA Champions League campaign. Zenit are a top club that always has the highest targets in all tournaments. I will do my best to help the team reach those aims.
Considering the length of the contract, can we say that you want to complete your career at Zenit?
I haven’t thought about this as I think only about the next match. If I am playing well, I will continue for as long as I can.
Would you like to do an Alexander Anyukov and play when you’re 36 years old?
I have great respect for him and his career. Sasha is a top footballer, a great professional and he can play at that age because he keeps fit. He can still play at a high level and it’s great.
How do you feel about returning to the Fisht Stadium? Good or sad memories from there? (Russia lost to Croatia at the World Cup –Ed.)
They are enjoyable memories, despite the result of it being our last World Cup game against Croatia. But the atmosphere and stadium were fantastic.
What are you expecting from the game with Sochi?
First of all, it’s a Zenit win. If we talk about them, then we saw in the first round what they could do against Spartak, even though they were away, which is especially difficult and will be more so as they are at home.