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Andriy Shevchenko

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Andriy Shevchenko (Ukrainian: Андрій Миколайович Шевченко, Andriy Mykolayovych Shevchenko, born 29 September 1976, Dvirkivschyna, Kiev Oblast) is a Ukrainian football striker who plays for Chelsea FC in the English Premier League.

Andriy was nine when the Chernobyl nuclear disaster occurred in April 1986. His village, not far from Chernobyl, was also affected by the disaster, and his family was one amongst the thousands who had to abandon their homes and relocate to the coast to escape the aftereffects. At an early age, he was a competitive boxer in the LLWI Ukrainian junior league, but due to his size, he was forced to move on to football, where he flourished.

Later that year, Andriy failed a dribbling test for entrance to a specialist sports school in Kyiv. However he happened to catch the sight of a Dynamo Kyiv scout while playing in a youth tournament, and was thus brought to the club. He was extremely successful in the youth system at the club, honing his skills on the junior teams. In 1990, Andriy, playing for the Dynamo Kyiv under-14 team in the Ian Rush Cup in Wales, was top scorer in the tournament, and was awarded a pair of Rush's boots as prize by the Liverpool player himself.

In 1993-94, he was the top scorer for Dynamo-2 with twelve goals, and he made an appearance in the first team list, taking Dynamo to their second successive league victory. He scored his first international goal in May 1996, in a friendly against Turkey, at Samsun. Shevchenko won the league again next season with Dynamo, scoring 6 goals in 20 games. The next two seasons, 1997-98 and 1998-99, were abundantly productive for Shevchenko. The highlight of his 1997-98 season was his first-half hat-trick against FC Barcelona in the 1997-98 Champions League, helping Dynamo produce a shock 4-0 road win. His 19 goals in 23 league matches, 6 goals in 10 Champions League matches, and another league victory with Dynamo in 1997-98 was followed by 28 goals in all competitions in 1998-99, and the league top-scorer award for his 18 goals there. Shevchenko's exploits in the Champions League took Dynamo to the semi-final stage of the tournament, before they lost to Bayern Munich 3-4 on aggregate.

Shevchenko won the domestic league title with Dynamo in each of his five seasons with the club. Under the guidance of Valeri Lobanovsky, the Dynamo manager from January 1997 to May 2002 (his third spell in the post), Shevchenko flourished into one of the team's most prominent and skillful players.

In 1999, Shevchenko joined the then five-time European Cup champions A.C. Milan for





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