Chelsea’s hierarchy warned Mykhailo Mudryk that he could face difficulty over his playing time if he signed for Arsenal, according to reports.
The Gunners were frontrunners to sign Mudryk this month but after several weeks of negotiations, the Premier League leaders could not agree a fee with Shakhtar Donetsk.
That allowed Chelsea to close in last week to complete a deal as co-owner Behdad Eghbali and director of global transfers Paul Winstanley travelled to Turkey to negotiate with Shakhtar before returning to London with Mudryk on their private jet once a £88.6m deal was agreed.
It’s believed that Arsenal was Mudryk’s preferred destination and during talks on Saturday, Chelsea put forward their case as to why he should make the move to Stamford Bridge instead.
According to The Athletic, the Blues told Mudryk that he would play a major role in Graham Potter’s team and that the club would provide a ‘platform’ for him to thrive.
The report also claims that Chelsea chiefs argued that Mudryk would find it tough at Arsenal where he would be competing for a place alongside Gabriel Martinelli.
Meanwhile, Shakhtar’s chief executive Sergei Palkin conceded he was impressed with the West London side’s proposal to Mudryk.
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‘When we met Chelsea, we stayed all together. For you to understand the context, it was for nine or 10 hours. They invited the player and explained to us the whole project,’ Palkin told The Athletic.
‘We realised that, yes, if you look right now, Chelsea have some kinds of problems but it is normal because they have a transition period from one owner to another.
‘It is understandable. They would like to change a lot. So when they explain to you the whole story and you look for the next two, three, four, five years, then you see they have a serious project.
‘I believe they will build one of the best clubs in the world because I am telling you, they are very serious in all directions: sports science, the stadium side, the commercial side, on all things. For us, they looked very ambitious.’