Premier League • England

Mikel Arteta standing firm over Arsenal ‘priority’ as Fabrizio Romano outlines major issue with winter capture

Mykhaylo Mudryk, Shakhtar Donetsk, November 2022

Fabrizio Romano insists Arsenal are still focused on signing Mykhaylo Mudryk in January but Shakhtar Donetsk are likely to prove formidable in negotiations.

The Gunners have been linked with a move for the 21-year-old for some time. He has appeared on the radar after an outstanding start to 2022-2023 with Shakhtar. The skilful winger has made ten league appearances and nine starts for the Ukrainians, scoring five goals.

Manager Igor Jovicevic has also trusted him in Europe, with the youngster handed starts in all six group games.

Despite scoring three times and providing two assists, Mudryk will play in the Europa League next year if he stays with his present employers.

They finished third in their group but the wide man’s displays saw him linked with Manchester United, Newcastle and Juventus.

But it is the Arsenal connection that will not go away. And Shakhtar deputy sporting director Carlo Nicolini openly welcomed clubs to ‘get back in contact’ with the club earlier this week.

The player’s value has soared due to his form this term.

Romano has now given his thoughts on the issue. It seems clear that Arteta wants the former Desna Chernihiv loan star in his ranks.

But the Italian journalist does not see the Eastern Europeans cracking in their stance over his price tag.

“I think the main priority is Mudryk. The player they want is Mudryk,” he told GIVEMESPORT. “It’s about the price because Shakhtar have been really strong in negotiations for more than a year.”

Mudryk price doubles in quick time

Arsenal have shown a willingness to back Arteta in the transfer market. The likes of Gabriel Jesus, Oleksandr Zinchenko and Fabio Vieira were recruited in the summer.

And with the north Londoners flying high at the top of the Premier League table, there may be further arrivals in the new year.

Mudryk is the obvious target and might be the final piece of the puzzle for a sustained title push. But they will need to part company with around £87m to secure his services.

That is the price tag that Shakhtar have slapped on the starlet. And Romano was quick to point out that they are happy to bide their time.

“Also, in August, when Everton offered €30million, Shakhtar said no and they said no to €40million approaches as well,” he added. “They want big money for Mudryk and it is not easy.”

Mudryk is well award of Arsenal’s interest. And he has made no secret of the fact he would love to play in the Premier League.

He even went as far as saying he was ‘very upset’ at the club’s valuation.

The man with eight Ukraine caps said he felt it would price him out of a move. However, that may not be the case if Arteta is handed the funds he desires.

Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain are other clubs said to be keeping tabs on the player.

But Arsenal are in pole position as they held ‘very positive contacts’ with his representatives earlier this year, according to Romano.

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