It would be the perfect Christmas present as the Russian Orthodox Church celebrates the festival two weeks later than in England.
The 27-year-old spent the public holiday with his wife Yulia and their two young children before saying goodbye to his Zenit colleagues at St Petersburg's five-star Grand Hotel Europe at their annual Christmas bash.
"It will take some time and Zenit must win many titles first. But recently the club have been progressing.
"The main thing is that the management should have willingness and players should be provided with opportunities."
The 'opportunities' he talks of are to escape and he would be crushed now if the move to Arsenal collapsed, especially after failing to fulfil his initial dream of joining Barcelona, with whom he fell in love as a youngster.