Chelsea are reportedly interested in signing Arsenal’s top January transfer target Mykhaylo Mudryk and now the two London rivals could be set to battle it out for the Ukrainian’s signature this winter as Shakhtar Donetsk look to drive an action. Earlier this week, the Gunners finally made their move by submitting their first formal offer worth in the region of £55million including add-ons for the highly-rated 21-year-old.
But Shakhtar held firm, rejecting the offer as they continue to point potential suitors towards their £85m asking price for their wonderkid.
Arsenal, however, are not prepared to pay that kind of money as they work on finding a compromise but now their task has become even more difficult with Chelsea seemingly set to throw their hat into the ring.
According to The Guardian, the Blues are keen on hijacking Arsenal’s deal after registering an interest in Mudryk, who aligns with their ambitious, forward-thinking transfer plans under Graham Potter.
It’s understood Chelsea could now pose a serious threat to Arsenal, although the Gunners have already received assurances from Mudryk’s agent that he wants to join the club.
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Earlier this month, Shakhtar CEO Sergey Palkin flew to London for face-to-face talks with a host of interested clubs from the Premier League.
At the time, no clubs were named but it now seems as though Chelsea are highly likely to have been one of the parties that sat down with Shakhtar in the capital to discuss figures.
Mudryk himself has grown frustrated with the way Shakhtar are looking to maximise their profits, claiming he could be denied his dream move.
He has continued to angle for a move to Arsenal on social media, even posting a clip of him streaming the 3-1 Boxing Day victory over West Ham on Instagram during the contest.
Problematically though for Arsenal, Chelsea are keen to invest in their attack after offloading Timo Werner (sold to RB Leipzig) and Romelu Lukaku (loaned to Inter Milan) last summer.
The Blues have struggled for goals this season and that will need to change in the second half of the season if they’re to make it into the top four.
The futures of Hakim Ziyech and Christian Pulisic are currently unclear while Callum Hudson-Odoi is having a mixed time out on loan at Bayer Leverkusen.
If Chelsea do decide to invest further in their attack, Mudryk’s numbers read favourably, having been involved in 18 goals in 18 appearances for Shakhtar this season.
The talented winger has scored 10 times and assisted eight goals in the Ukrainian Premier Liga and Champions League this season.
He has been one of the standout performers on the continental stage, which is why a host of clubs including Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester City, Newcastle and Real Madrid have all been linked with his services.
Express Sport understands Arsenal are continuing to work on a deal for Mudryk and that they will return with a second bid.
The Gunners are not deterred by Shakhtar’s hard-nosed response to their opening offer, even if they are still reluctant to match their valuation for Mudryk.