Wednesday, April 24News That Matters

Zinchenko reveals what he told Mudryk after Arsenal transfer snub

Oleksandr Zinchenko says he holds no grudge against Mykhailo Mudryk after his Ukraine international teammate rejected a January transfer to Arsenal.

The Gunners appeared set to break their transfer record in order to secure the services of one of European most highly-rated young forwards.

Mudryk had made no secret of his desire to join the Premier League club with a series of less than cryptic social media posts, while he had told Zinchenko’s wife, journalist Vlada Sedan, in an interview that he had dreamed of a move to the Emirates.

As events transpired, Arsenal were unable to agree a fee with Shakhtar Donetsk for the player and their refusal to meet the Ukrainain side’s valuation allowed Chelsea and Todd Boehly the chance to swoop.

With Chelsea happy to accept Skakhtar’s demands, Mudryk found himself with no option but to join Chelsea instead, much to Zinchenko’s disappointment.

He told the Daily Mail: ‘I said to 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.’

Arsenal reacted to Mudryk’s snub by signing Leandro Trossard instead, a decision which has reaped instant dividends, while the 22-year-old has found adapting to the Premier League a tough task.

‘I remember when Mikel was leaving City (in 2019),’ Zinchenko said. ‘I didn’t hold my emotions. I couldn’t because this guy was so special to me.

‘He taught me a lot As a human being he was incredible and the way he was working with us young players after every single training session, the advice he was giving everyone, was something incredibly important for me.’

Asked what makes Arteta special, he added: ‘The way he sees football – his vision, his character, his mentality. He’s a winner and everyone likes to win… as simple as that.

‘I said to my circle: “If one day I’m going to leave City and I’m going to stay in the Premier League, it will be only one manager: Mikel Arteta.”

‘That’s what I said to him when he called me for the first time in that transfer window.’

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