Liverpool have joined a lengthy list of clubs pushing to sign Shakhtar Donetsk winger Mykhaylo Mudryk, though the Ukraine international has already dropped an Arsenal hint.
The 21-year-old is a player drawing ever frequent links with a move to the Premier League. The right-footer operates primarily on the left wing and has enhanced his reputation greatly through his Champions League displays this season.
Indeed, Mudryk scored one and provided two assists when Shakhtar upset RB Leipzig 4-1 in game week one.
He followed that up with the equalising goal on matchday two against Celtic to help the Ukrainian side remain undefeated in Group F.
Brentford tried and failed to sign Mudryk at the beginning of 2022. It was then Everton’s turn to be left empty-handed in the summer upon seeing a £26m bid rebuffed.
Shakhtar chief, Darijo Srna, confirmed the Toffees bid, though claimed it’ll take a hell of a lot more than £26m to secure his signature.
“We received an offer of €30million [from Everton],” Srna told CBS Sports.
“And when our president doesn’t sell a player for €30million, especially in such difficult times, he is sending a message to everyone that he wants to progress in the Champions League and to win the championship.
“Mudryk is a serious talent. After Kylian Mbappe and Vinicius Jr, he’s the best player in Europe in his position.
“If someone wants to buy Mudryk they must spend a lot, a lot, a lot of money and respect our club and our president.”
Football Insider claimed Newcastle are monitoring Mudryk, while the player himself gave the clearest indication yet where he future could lay if he does leave Shakhtar.
Mudryk “can’t say no” to Arsenal
Speaking to CBS Sports’ Ben Jacobs, Mudryk said in early-September: “I think every guy dreams about the Premier League.”
When pushed if there was any one “dream” club in particular he’d like to play for, such as Real Madrid or Arsenal, Mudryk continued: “Yes yes, it’s hard to say but Arsenal is a very good team. Very good coach, I like the way they play.”
Jacobs finished his interview by asking if it’d be hard to say no if Arsenal came calling.
“Yes, from my side I can’t say no. But a transfer is not only my decision and my word.”
Fabrizio Romano subsequently reported Shakhtar will hold out for around £43m for Mudryk. Given the latest report from Calciomercato, they’re likely to get it.
The Italian outlet claim two new suitors have entered the race – Liverpool and Sevilla.
They state all three of Sevilla, Liverpool and Arsenal ‘will make an attempt’ to sign Mudryk in January.
Would Liverpool move make sense?
Mudryk operates primarily on the left wing, a position currently tied up by Luis Diaz.
The Colombian has been one of very few bright sparks at Anfield this season and his tenacious displays have quickly made him a fan favourite.
At 25, he’s only just entering his prime years, meaning Mudryk may struggle for minutes.
However, Liverpool showed last season just how vital having adequate strength in depth can be when fighting for multiple honours.
The Reds lost Sadio Mane, Divock Origi and Takumi Minamino in the summer. Those three exits were offset by just two arrivals: Darwin Nunez and Fabio Carvalho.
While the reduced depth hasn’t been felt thus far, the fixture list is about to get a whole lot more congested after the international break.
Free midweeks will become a thing of the past with Liverpool poised to play twice a week more often than not.
It is then that their depth will be tested, and a January swoop for Europe’s hottest property could alleviate a problem that will flare up at the business end of the season.