Arsenal are still believed to be plotting to sign Shakhtar Donetsk starlet, Mykhaylo Mudryk, despite rampant interest from Premier League rivals Chelsea.
What’s the word?
That’s according to transfer guru Fabrizio Romano, who revealed that the Gunners remain firmly intent on landing the 22-year-old this month, despite the suggestion that the Stamford Bridge outfit could look to hijack the deal.
Writing on Twitter regarding that update, the respected journalist stated: “Darijo Srna, Shakhtar Donetsk director, here at Stamford Bridge as expected for Chelsea-City game. Arsenal will keep pushing for Mykhaylo Mudryk, player’s preference and total priority — but Shakhtar also met with Chelsea in the last hours.”
As Romano alluded to, the eight-cap sensation – who could reportedly cost as much as £85m were he to make the switch to England – appears keen on joining Mikel Arteta’s side in the current window, although the Blues could well look to turn his head with a rival offer.
Imagine him and Jesus
Although the presence of Graham Potter’s side in the equation has certainly complicated matters, the hope will be that Mudryk does end up signing on the dotted line with the Emirates outfit, with such an addition likely to only bolster the club’s title charge.
The fleet-footed “baller” – as described by journalist Sacha Pisani – has been in devastating form in his homeland in recent times, scoring ten goals and providing eight assists in just 18 games across all fronts this term.
That sparkling tally includes a haul of three goals and two assists in just six Champions League group stage outings, with the 5 foot 9 dynamo having notably netted twice in the two meetings with Scottish champions Celtic, having looked “frightening” down the left flank against the Old Firm giants, as per journalist Josh Bunting.
Will Arsenal win the race for Mudryk?
The winger’s remarkable speed and clinical nature in front of goal has unsurprisingly caught the attention of Arteta and co, with the Gunners boss likely licking his lips at the prospect of adding Mudryk to his lethal forward line.
The Spaniard could well have the makings of an elite attacking partnership involving the Shakhtar star and summer signing, Gabriel Jesus, with the Brazilian having led the line superbly in the early months of the campaign, prior to his recent injury absence.
Despite only scoring five goals in 14 league appearances this term, the 25-year-old has been a key cog in Arteta’s relentless machine as he offers a real creative spark through the middle, with seven assists across all fronts to his name to date.
Arguably the club’s “most important player” despite having only recently made the move to north London, according to pundit Rio Ferdinand, Jesus clearly has a knack for bringing the club’s other forwards into play, showcased by the fact that he ranks in the top 8% in Europe among those in his position for assists.
As club legend Martin Keown stated, the striker’s ability to drop “very deep” allows the wide men to “funnel in”, ensuring there should well be plenty of space for Mudryk to exploit if he is to cut in off the left flank.
That understanding in attack could well lead to a truly lethal combination, hence the need for Edu to keep ‘pushing’ to secure the Ukrainian’s signature.