Chelsea have agreed a €100m deal with Shakhtar Donetsk for the winger Mykhailo Mudryk, in a dramatic hijacking of Arsenal’s bid.
The 22-year-old’s first preference had been Mikel Arteta’s side but he has been persuaded by Chelsea’s swiftness and is set to travel from the Ukrainian club’s Turkish base to undergo a medical this weekend.
It was first reported that Chelsea were willing to blow Arsenal “out of the water” in the first week of January, and have now followed that up with new Director of Global Talent Paul Winstanley travelling to meet Shakhtar and making it clear they would improve any bid.
A straight up fee of €70m has been agreed, with a further €30m in add-ons. While the deal has yet to be completed, it would take another dramatic twist for the player to now join Arsenal.
Sources with knowledge of the deal insisted Chelsea were willing to more than double Arsenal’s wage offer.
The Donetsk club – stationed in Poland as the war in their country continues – refused to lower their price for Mudryk due to the feeling they lost millions on potential sales with Fifa’s ruling that foreign players could leave the Ukrainian league for free due to Vladimir Putin’s invasion.
Arsenal did not meet Shakhtar’s asking price and the Premier League leaders made it clear that they would not get into a bidding war with Chelsea.
The situation will leave the decision down to Mudryk himself, but Chelsea’s directness has altered the direction of his future.
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