Premier League • England

Arsenal maintain contact with Shakhtar Donetsk despite failed Mudryk move with top midfielder on Arteta’s radar

Georgiy Sudakov, Mykhailo Mudryk Ukraine

Georgiy Sudakov (l) is wanted by Arsenal

Arsenal have reportedly maintained contact with Shakhtar Donetsk after their failed negotiations for Mykhailo Mudryk, as they now eye a potential swoop for highly-rated midfielder Georgiy Sudakov.

The Gunners had been expected to snap up Mudryk in the January transfer window before Chelsea hijacked their move for the Ukrainian, signing him in a whopping £88.5m deal from Shakhtar instead.

That was despite Mudryk dropping numerous hints on social media that he was keen to move to The Emirates.

The 22-year-old has struggled to adapt to life at Stamford Bridge, although he has improved under Mauricio Pochettino after struggling to find his feet with Graham Potter and then interim boss Frank Lampard.

And international teammate Oleksandr Zinchenko, now of Arsenal, has revealed that he was desperate for the winger to join up with him in north London.

Speaking about Mudryk failing to join him, as it appeared he wanted, Zinchenko told the Daily Mail earlier in the year:  “I told him: ‘It’s gone already, it doesn’t matter what you wanted, what the other guys wanted’.

“Now you’re a Chelsea player, you signed a long-term contract and you have only one option, only one way: direct and forward.

“Unfortunately he didn’t become an Arsenal player – as I wanted personally! – but it’s life.”

However, it appears that there is a good chance another Ukrainian could join Zinchenko, given the latest reports on Sudakov.

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Gunners firmly in the mix for Sudakov

Tuto Juve has covered the growing list of suitors for the central midfielder and put Arsenal firmly among them.

They report that Sudakov has been excelling of late, notching two goals in nine games in Ukraine’s top flight as well as netting in the Champions League.

His impressive form has left him ‘in the sights’ of several top clubs, with the Gunners well in the mix to snap up his signature.

Sudakov is very much viewed as Shakhtar’s ‘next valuable asset after the sale of Mudryk to Chelsea and the report adds that Arsenal are ‘keeping channels open’ over a potential move.

Mikel Arteta’s men are not the only interested club though, with Chelsea themselves also keen, along with the likes of Manchester United, Barcelona and Juventus.

But the fact that the Gunners already have a connection with Shakhtar after their failed Mudryk move is said to give them a step up over their rivals.

Arsenal moved top of the Premier League on Saturday evening after the much-maligned Kai Havertz gave them a late win at Brentford.

The Gunners are back in action on Wednesday evening when they host French side Lens in the Champions League.

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