Tuesday, January 10, 2023

REVEALED: Who Arsenal could sign instead of Joao Felix as Mykhaylo Mudryk transfer 'edges closer'

Over the past couple of weeks, it has been suggested that Arsenal wanted to sign both Mykhaylo Mudryk and Joao Felix this month. However, it now looks like only one of them will end up at the Emirates Stadium.

It’s believed the Gunners had been in dialogue with Felix’s representatives over a potential loan move before Chelsea emerged as the only club willing to meet Atletico Madrid’s demands, which include full salary coverage, a £9million loan fee and no purchase option/obligation.

With Atletico not budging on their terms, it’s a deal Arsenal were simply not willing to sanction. Instead, sporting director Edu has continued to focus on negotiations with Shakhtar Donetsk for Mudryk.

Gunners247 understands the Gunners have submitted two bids for the winger, the first being £55million including add-ons. However, Shakhtar have remained reluctant to soften their stance as they hold out for a fee closer to their valuation of around £88million.

It’s a deal that has and still does require patience and compromises, though various reports emerged on Monday that claimed progress had been made as the two clubs finally look to find an agreement. So, with Felix on his way to Chelsea and Mudryk seemingly edging closer to Arsenal, who else could Mikel Arteta target should he want to sign not one but two forwards this month?

An obvious candidate could be Brighton’s Leandro Trossard. Tottenham have ‘accelerated’ their interest in the Belgium international according to the Daily Mail, who add that a deal is not imminent and any move will most likely take place later on in the window, if at all.

Trossard was linked with Arsenal prior to his move to Brighton in 2019 and has remained a target for Arteta since, with talkSPORT reporter Alex Crook claiming the Gunners are monitoring the player’s situation. Additionally, the 28-year-old is out of contract at the end of the season, making him a cheap and accessible option for clubs looking to strengthen in the coming weeks.

Wilfried Zaha and Eden Hazard’s names have also done the rounds in recent times, but Arsenal’s change in recruitment strategy makes moves for either player highly unlikely. Wolves’ Pedro Neto is said to have admirers within the walls of London Colney but is again unlikely to be under consideration as he recovers from ankle surgery.

It must be added that the possibility of Mudryk being the only forward signing is another potential outcome due to the return of Emile Smith Rowe, who featured in the 3-0 FA Cup win over Oxford United on Monday following a three-month spell on the sidelines.

It not only provides a very welcome boost for Arteta and his squad but also eases the need for more than one attacking reinforcement quite significantly.

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