Sergei Palkin confirms why Chelsea beat Arsenal to £89m Mykhailo Mudryk signing

Back to the drawing board: Arsenal have missed on on their top target  (Getty Images)
Back to the drawing board: Arsenal have missed on on their top target (Getty Images)

Shakhtar Donetsk CEO Sergei Palkin has confirmed he personally told Arsenal sporting director Edu Gaspar that a deal to sign Mykhailo Mudryk was not possible.

Chelsea have now completed the £89m signing of the Ukraine international in a major blow to the Gunners, who had seen two bids rejected after making Mudryk their top January target.

The Blues managed to come to a swift agreement with Shakhtar, with co-owner Behdad Eghbali and new head of recruitment Paul Winstanley flying to Turkey to hold talks with club president Rinat Akhmetov in Antalya.

Mudryk had been keen on a move to Arsenal but held positive talks with Graham Potter in a phone call sanctioned by Shakhtar.

Speaking to The Athletic, Palkin has confirmed both London giants offered the same overall fee for Mudryk, though Chelsea’s bid included more realistic add-ons.

The move is worth an initial £62m and various add-ons, such as Chelsea winning the Premier League, could see it rise by another £26.5m.

“If you look inside the fixed part and bonuses, it was completely different,” said Palkin.

‘Different time (schedule) of the payments, different kinds of bonuses. Yes, we can talk about bonuses, but these bonuses should be somehow achievable and realistic, let’s say.

“Therefore, in this case, Chelsea was much more serious and fair in some points.

Chelsea unveiled Mudryk to supporters during Sunday’s win over Crystal Palace (AFP via Getty Images)
Chelsea unveiled Mudryk to supporters during Sunday’s win over Crystal Palace (AFP via Getty Images)

“Before Chelsea arrived in Turkey, we almost agreed with Arsenal that there was no chance to close (the deal).

“When they proposed the final offer of €70million plus €30million (in add-ons), we sat down and started to talk internally about how it will be fulfilled in terms of the payments, the fixed part and the bonus issues.

‘We realised we will not close this deal (with Arsenal). I said to Edu that I did my best but it was not possible.”