Shakhtar Donetsk CEO reveals why Mykhailo Mudryk was sold to Chelsea instead of Arsenal

  • Shakhtar Donetsk CEO explains why Mykhailo Mudryk was sold to instead of Arsenal.

Shakhtar Donetsk CEO reveals why Mykhailo Mudryk was sold to Chelsea instead of Arsenal
Shakhtar Donetsk CEO reveals why Mykhailo Mudryk was sold to instead of Arsenal

The CEO of Shakhtar Donetsk, Sergei Palkin, stated that Mykhailo Mudryk’s potential transfer to Arsenal before signing with was only an “outside visual impression.”

The Gunners prioritized signing the winger during the January transfer window, but they were hesitant to meet Shakhtar’s asking price, which the Blues used against them.

Mudryk was announced as a player on Sunday after a brief round of weekend negotiations, despite his very public preference to join Arsenal over the previous month, during which he frequently posted on social media about the Premier League leaders.

Speaking to The Athletic, Palkin revealed it was only on Saturday that he realised Mudryk would be heading to Stamford Bridge instead.

“I realised two days ago [Saturday] when arrived here – the co-owner Behdad Eghbali and [director of global talent and transfers] Paul Winstanley. They came to Antalya in Turkey [where Shakhtar have been at a training camp],” he said.

“Before arrived, I did not know they were close, because I communicated with Arsenal in the same way as I had with Chelsea. Even I can tell you more: I met Arsenal more times than Chelsea. Therefore, before this last meeting, Arsenal was close, or a little bit closer to this deal than Chelsea.

“If you don’t count telephone conversations, it was three times [he met with Arsenal].


“From my point of view, [the social media posts] is why talked about Arsenal. It is because Arsenal contacted the player almost one and a half months before they contacted us. Can you imagine, for example, to have Mikel Arteta, Oleksandr Zinchenko and the sporting director calling you, to have Arsenal calling you almost every day, every two days, every three days? You can want or not want the move but you follow this kind of reception and contacts.

“If you talk about Chelsea, they called me at the end of December and asked if they can contact Mudryk because they are interested in and want to talk with him. I said, ‘No problem, you can contact him’. The first time they contacted was around the end of December or the start of January. They contacted the player and the agent of the player and they met the financial conditions.

“Therefore, why did many people around it have the impression that Mudryk was going to Arsenal? It is because Arsenal contacted and then Mudryk started to watch some games of Arsenal. But negotiations are negotiations. When you didn’t close everything, when you did not [close] the last dot, then you cannot finish the deal. Therefore it was just an outside visual impression that Mudryk is close to Arsenal.”

Palkin added that despite reports stating otherwise, Arsenal’s total package was the same figure as Chelsea’s, but the issue was over how the fee would be paid.

“Overall, [their transfer offers were] the same. Not approximately the same – it was the same figure. The fixed part, variable part, bonuses. But if you look inside the fixed part and bonuses, it was completely different,” he added.


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