Back in February, Zinchenko had to process the news of his country being invaded by Russia. His parents were safe but other members of his family were not.
A bomb went off opposite the hospital where his grandad was added to his already deepening woes, all this happened a few days before he had travelled to Goodison park to face Everton with Manchester City.
Impossible not to be pleased for Ukraine. Exceptional performance amid unimaginable circumstances. Zinchenko was magnificent.— Samuel Luckhurst (@samuelluckhurst) June 1, 2022
Zinchenko was ready to put his football career on hold as his country needed every man they could get to go up against far more superior Russian numbers. But his close friends and family told him that he could make more impact through his status as a Premier League footballer for City.
He along with his wife Vlada were never going to sit in silence and watch their country get attacked, since February, Zinchenko began to balance life as a footballer whilst trying to help as many Ukrainians as possible.
Oleksandr Zinchenko wanted to go and fight when Russia invaded Ukraine.— Manchester City News (@ManCityMEN) June 2, 2022
Instead, this is how he has defended and helped his country while also helping #mcfc to win the Premier League @spbajko https://t.co/tk3oIXdOSO
At first he struggled to balance his work and personal life, during an emotional interview with Gary Lineker, Zinchenko revealed that he often found himself uncontrollably breaking down in tears whenever he thought about the situation.
Oleksandr Zinchenko had to be talked out of heading home to the front line when war broke out in Ukraine. Zinchenko was desperate to help his people, but was convinced by family and friends to stay in Manchester and carry on playing for #ManCity.— City Xtra (@City_Xtra) June 2, 2022
On his days off, Oleksandr Zinchenko has been in regular contact with Ukrainian soldiers who have been helping defend their country. He has already promised them he will throw a big party in Manchester for them once the war is over.— City Xtra (@City_Xtra) June 2, 2022
One day, Zinchenko messaged his close friend, Artemy Ryabov to see if he could lend a hand to help loading lorries with essential equipments rather than overthinking the situation at home. And since then, Ryabov took over to organise a plan to allow Zinchenko to help.
The City player made a significant donation to the national bank and also managed to set up a supply line to Ukraine, by getting in contact with a footballer who plays in Spain who had friends in the Azov regiment fighting on the front line.
Whilst in Manchester, Ukrainian and Polish communities came together with locals to form a crew of 150 volunteers to help load 27 lorries worth of essentials to be sent to Ukraine via Poland.
"I'm just crying. I promise you, I'm just crying."— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) March 4, 2022
Oleksandr Zinchenko has thanked the world for standing with Ukraine in an emotional interview about the Russian invasion of his homeland.
Watch in full on Football Focus tomorrow at 12pm on @bbciplayer
Zinchenko’s team mates Rodri also made a donation to the cause and Fernandinho auctioned his match shirt and armband to raise funds for charity.
Ryabov spoke about the help received from Zinchenko and those around him.
He said: “We're trying to help as many people as we can, Every fourth or fifth person has issues with hot water or basic needs in Ukraine — it's around 10 million people in total — so we can't help so many people but I'm glad there are so many people around Alex and people around the world willing to help and also making their contribution.”
“I receive lots of messages from City fans asking how can we help. That is the best. This community, this club, this city is so helpful.”
He added: “I’m so proud of English people in general because every other person could say it isn't their business or their country but here I feel that people are really helpful.”
🇺🇦❤️ Emotional scenes at the Etihad as a tearful Oleksandr Zinchenko wraps a Ukraine flag around the Premier League trophy.— Standard Sport (@standardsport) May 22, 2022
"I will never forget this support, never in my life."
LIVE: https://t.co/wgohcvVbn0#MCIAVL pic.twitter.com/gOliW4x1sF
Zinchenko emotionally celebrated his club’s title win by draping the Premier League trophy in the Ukraine flag, the footage of that went around the world.
Oleksandr Zinchenko has been doing everything he can in order to help as many people in his country as possible, a true champion, on and off the pitch.
Featured Image Credit: Alamy
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