Zenit captain apologizes over strike

Zenit captain apologizes over strike

MOSCOW - Agence France-Presse
Zenit captain apologizes over strike

Igor Denisov (L) is a key member of Zenit and the Russian national team. REUTERS photo

Russian football captain Igor Denisov has begged Zenit St. Petersburg for forgiveness after walking out on the club for a month in protest at the salary paid to Brazilian new signing Hulk.

The influential midfielder has not played for Zenit since late September after refusing to train because of the reported 100 million euros the team paid for the striker and Axel Witsel of Belgium.

Denisov was in the process of renegotiating his own $3 million contract that runs through 2014 and felt that the club was showing disrespect to players who won it the championship for the second year running last year.

Zenit said Denisov himself asked the club management for a meeting that could finally help resolve the dispute.

“I have a valid contract - I both have to and want to see it off until the end,” the club quoted Denisov as telling the team executives and coaches in a statement released yesterday. “I was wrong in this situation. I was driven by my emotions, and in the end failed to help my teammates.”