Chelsea look set to hijack Arsenal’s pursuit of Mykhailo Mudrik after agreeing a €100m deal with Shakhtar Donetsk for the winger, sources have told ESPN.
The offer includes a fixed fee of €70 million with an additional €30 million to match the Ukrainian club’s valuation of the 22-year-old’s transfer.
– Stream ESPN+: LaLiga, Bundesliga, more (US)
ESPN reported on Friday that Arsenal had made a third bid for Mudrik, but Chelsea were still expected to submit their bid despite the loan of Joao Felix from Atletico Madrid until the end of the season.
Sources have told ESPN that Chelsea have offered Mudrik a better salary package and a longer contract than Arsenal. The sources also said that the €30 million bonuses are within easy reach.
In a statement on Saturday, Chelsea confirmed that they are “discussing terms with Shakhtar Donetsk over the transfer of Mykhailo Mudrik.”
“If an agreement is reached between the two clubs, the Ukraine international, who can operate as a winger or forward, will discuss personal terms with the Blues before making a permanent move,” the statement concluded.
Arsenal have done most of the bidding in trying to sign Mudric, who has hinted on several social media accounts that he is open to a move to the Emirates Stadium.
However, a source familiar with the deal told ESPN that Arsenal are still trying to agree a payment structure and various performance-related milestones that will make up the add-ons.
Meanwhile, Chelsea have moved quickly. A club delegation including Behdad Eghbali, who represents co-owners Clearlake Capital, and Paul Winstanley, director of global talent and transfers, flew to Turkey for face-to-face talks with Shakhtar representatives.
Negotiations have progressed rapidly and Chelsea are now confident of agreeing personal terms with the player.
Sources have told ESPN that Arsenal have always believed the player prefers to join them, but Chelsea are at an advanced stage in talks with Mudrik’s representatives over a long-term deal.
On Saturday, Shakhtar released a short statement confirming that the deal had been completed.
The statement read: “FC Shakhtar president Rinat Akhmetov and Chelsea co-owner Behdad Eghbali discussed today the transfer of Mykhailo Mudrik to Chelsea FC. The parties are very close to agreeing on the player’s transfer to the club.”
Information from ESPN’s Julien Laurens contributed to this report.