Chelsea flop 'devastated' at missing out on Arsenal transfer

  • Chelsea swooped for Mykhailo Mudryk in January 2023 after long-standing Arsenal interest
  • Gunners reportedly 'convinced' of Mudryk's talent
  • Winger has struggled mightily in west London

Mykhailo Mudryk came close to joining Arsenal in January 2023
Mykhailo Mudryk came close to joining Arsenal in January 2023 / James Gill - Danehouse/GettyImages

Chelsea winger Mykhailo Mudryk is believed to have been left 'devastated' by missing out on the chance to join Arsenal in January 2023.

Mudryk long flirted with a move to north London having emerged as a star at Shakhtar Donetsk. A transfer saga developed midway through the Gunners' promising 2022/23 campaign, but the Ukrainian international instead joined Chelsea, who spent £88.5m to acquire the winger.

Mudryk has struggled mightily over a year into his career at Stamford Bridge; recording a mere nine goal contributions in 43 appearances for the club.

Chelsea flop 'devastated' at missing out on Arsenal transfer

Mykhaylo Mudryk
Mudryk scored a fortunate goal against Arsenal earlier this season / Justin Setterfield/GettyImages

Mudryk seemed destined to join Arsenal last winter, with The Athletic reporting that technical director Edu and Mikel Arteta 'were utterly convinced' of Mudryk's talent. The winger had few senior appearances under his belt but had produced a couple of standout moments during Shakhtar's 2022/23 Champions League campaign.

Thus, it was regarded as a bitter blow when Chelsea swooped and the player himself, Arsenal believed, was left 'devastated' when the move didn't materialise. The club saw Mudryk as an excellent complementary piece to starting wingers Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli but were aware that the then 22-year-old was far from the finished product.

Mudryk has shown all his rawness during his 13 months at Chelsea, initially struggling mightily during a period of dysfunction in west London. Mauricio Pochettino's arrival has brought some stability, but the winger has produced little outside of the flukey goal he bagged against the Gunners earlier this season.

After missing out of Mudryk, Arsenal pivoted to Brighton star Leandro Trossard. While supposedly a less exciting profile than the Ukrainian, Trossard immediately found his feet at the Emirates and has become a clutch performer for Arteta's title-chasers.

The Belgian regularly drops in and out of the starting XI, performing various roles, and has rarely let Arteta down. He's recorded 23 goal contributions in just over 50 Arsenal appearances and is set to play a key role during the run-in this season.

We'll never know whether the gifted but incredibly raw Mudryk would've been able to replicate Trossard's production had Arteta gotten his hands on him, but there's no doubt that the acquisition of the Belgian for a snippet of Mudryk's price was undoubtedly the shrewder bit of business.