Football: Dinamo sign Russia trio from Anzhi

MOSCOW (AFP) - Dinamo Moscow on Thursday announced the signing of a trio of Russian internationals from Anzhi Makhachkala, after the big-spending Dagestani club decided to part with their priciest stars.

Dinamo vice-president Gennady Solovyov said the team had completed the transfers of Russia captain Igor Denisov, former Chelsea midfielder Yury Zhirkov and striker Alexander Kokorin from Anzhi for an undisclosed sum.

"You will be able to see Kokorin, Denisov and Zhirkov at the Dinamo training ground as early as (Friday)," he told the online edition of the Izvestia daily. "The new players will be presented there."

Izvestia said Denisov was likely to play in Dinamo's next match on Sunday away at Krasnodar.

Kokorin and Zhirkov, meanwhile, are still recovering from injuries that forced them to miss Russia's 1-0 World Cup qualifying loss on Wednesday in Northern Ireland.

Anzhi's billionaire owner Suleiman Kerimov decided last week to drastically cut the Caspian Sea side's budget and scale down its ambitions after spending more than 200 million euros (S$335.7 million) on the club's development.

Anzhi had also announced on Wednesday that midfielder Oleg Shatov was leaving to join Zenit St Petersburg.

The three stars joining Dinamo and Shatov are the first big names to leave Anzhi after the strategy change was announced.

They are expected in due course to be joined by some of Anzhi's foreign legion such as Samuel Eto'o of Cameroon and Willian of Brazil, both of whom will be hard to accommodate within their new stripped-down budget.

Kerimov's largesse saw stars such as Eto'o propel Anzhi out of the football wilderness and into third place in the Russian Premier League in the 2012-2013 season.

Yet the tycoon never realised his dream of instant success through big-money injections and he appears to have lost faith after Anzhi's disastrous start to the current season.

Dinamo sit sixth after four matches while Anzhi are struggling in 13th place in the 16-club league.

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