Arsenal have been tipped to complete an impressive double coup, with an explosive winger able to be signed for less than half of his apparent valuation, per reports.
The Gunners sit atop the Premier League table and have put the disappointment of missing out on Champions League football firmly to bed.
Arsenal capitulated towards the back end of last season and were pipped to fourth spot by bitter rivals Tottenham. However, while that was far from the ideal scenario, it may have worked out for the best long-term.
Mikel Arteta has been able to rotate his squad at will given their presence in the less competitive Europa League.
That’s allowed the front line Arsenal stars to remain at peak performance for the league clashes and Arsenal went into the World Cup with a five-point lead in the EPL. They also cruised through Group A in the Europa, winning five from six while featuring many of the fringe elements of their squad.
However, to ensure this season isn’t simply a one-off, big business is anticipated in the 2023 transfer windows.
The positions of central midfield and winger are known to be on the agenda. Two such players who fit their criteria are Shakhtar Donetsk’s Mykhaylo Mudryk and Leicester City’s Youri Tielemans.
Mudryk, 21, was recently described by Fabrizio Romano as Arsenal’s “main priority”. Arteta is seeking a ready-made option to lighten the load on Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli.
Shakhtar raised eyebrows when claiming Ukraine’s brightest star is valued at €100m (approx. £86m). However, according to the Mirror, Arsenal can complete a deal for less than half that amount.
Mudryk to Arsenal in 2023 gathers pace
The newspaper reports Arsenal are ‘set to win the race’ for the right-footed left winger if they bid around £40m plus add-ons.
They claim Arsenal already have the broad framework of a deal in place and Shakhtar have significantly lowered their demands.
Mudryk previously admitted he’d struggle to say no to Arsenal if they came calling. What’s more, the presence of Ukraine teammate Oleksandr Zinchenko at the Emirates is believed to be playing a part in his thinking.
The Mirror don’t specify whether a deal would happen in January or be made to wait until the summer. Regardless, Arsenal’s admiration of Mudryk is clear and the signs now point towards an arrival at some stage in 2023.
Mudryk has 10 goals and eight assists across all competitions this season, including five goal contributions in the Champions League.
Second Arsenal deal there for the making
Aside from Mudryk, the noises surrounding Youri Tielemans suggest the Leicester midfielder could follow Mudryk through the front door.
Tielemans was heavily linked with the Gunners throughout last summer, though an official bid was never tabled.
However, the Belgian is now in the final year of his contract and despite Leicester’s confidence he’ll pen fresh terms, can leave for free at season’s end.
Liverpool have been labelled a ‘dark horse’ on the subject of who Tielemans will play for next season. The Reds’ midfield issues are well publicised and Jude Bellingham is their primary target.
However, Tielemans could be signed as well as Bellingham given he’ll not cost a fee. A double coup involving those two stars would all but completely solve Liverpool’s central midfield dilemma.
But per CBS Sports’ Ben Jacobs, Tielemans instead has eyes only for the Gunners. Via talkSPORT, Jacobs said “Tielemans has got his heart set on Arsenal.”
A cut-price January deal could be explored to fend off Liverpool if they firm up their interest. If they don’t, Arsenal may make Tielemans’ dreams come true without having to pay a transfer fee next summer.
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