Arsenal were reportedly willing to bid £43million in their efforts to sign highly-rated Shakhtar Donetsk attacker Mykhaylo Mudryk in the closing days of the summer transfer window.
Mikel Arteta’s men were strongly linked with the 21-year-old forward in the lead-up to the September 1 deadline and are said to have had a £25.9m offer knocked back for the player.
While a further offer did not follow, transfer insider Fabrizio Romano states that Shakhtar are unlikely to consider offers of under £43m for future star Mudryk.
Premier League rivals Brentford have also been mentioned as an admirer of the youngster, who played a major role in his side’s Champions League victory over RB Leipzig on Tuesday evening.
Mudryk scored and also added two assists in a 4-1 victory in an impressive triumph in Germany.
Overall, the Ukraine international has scored three goals and totalled 12 assists in just 30 games for Shakhtar.
The Gunners were looking at Mudryk as a replacement for Nice-bound Nicolas Pepe. However, they were unable to convince the Ukrainian outfit into parting company.
One former Ukraine star who rates Mudryk very highly has, though, questioned Shakhtar’s asking price.
He wrote on social media: “With all my love for Mudrik’s football talent, this player cannot be worth 30 million euros at this stage, and 50 even more so. Our club should learn to soberly evaluate its players, and not take away their opportunities for growth. And this applies to most of our clubs.”
Romano does not state whether Arsenal could renew their interest in the player in January.
Arteta admits deadline-day disappointment
Murdyk, meanwhile, was not the only player on Arsenal’s deadline-day radar.
The Gunners also tried to sign midfielder Douglas Luiz from Aston Villa. However, they ran out of time as the clock ticked down.
And speaking about what the club tried to do late in the window, Arteta admitted: “We had a lot of things still to do in the squad. The club has done a phenomenal job of bringing in players that we wanted.
“Unfortunately, in the last 72 hours, Thomas [Partey] and Mohamed [Elneny] got injured, and we had to react in the market. We tried, and at the end of the day, we have to bring in the players we feel are right. But we didn’t manage to do it.”
Despite their late struggles in the market and Sunday’s loss at Manchester United, Arsenal have made a strong start to the season.
Arteta’s men have won five of their opening six games to sit top of the table on 15 points’
They are back in action on Thursday afternoon when they face FC Zurich in their Europa League opener.
The Gunners are in a group with Zurich, PSV Eindhoven and Bodo/Glimt. On paper, it looks a reasonable draw for the north London club, but Bodo/Glimt actually thrashed Jose Mourinho’s Roma 6-1 in the EL Conference group stage last season at home before earning a respectable 2-2 draw in the reverse fixture.
They did, however, lose to the Italian side in the quarter-finals of the same competition.
After facing Zurich, Arsenal will look to get back to winning ways in the Premier League when they host Everton on Sunday.
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