A report from The Athletic has shared what Chelsea staff told Mykhaylo Mudryk about Arsenal winger Gabriel Martinelli in a private meeting before he joined the Blues.
Mikel Arteta was handed a blow over the weekend as his top target Mudryk joined Arsenal’s London rivals.
The Gunners were seemingly leading the race for the 22-year-old and he seemed set on a switch to the Emirates Stadium, rather than Stamford Bridge.
But as revealed by Shakhtar Donetsk’s CEO Sergei Palkin, Chelsea matched the Ukrainian outfit’s demands and convinced the youngster to make the move.
And it seems that two of their board members mentioned Martinelli in order to convince Mudryk over a move to west London.
What Chelsea staff told Mudryk about Martinelli
The Athletic reports that Mudryk had decided he’d prefer a move to Arsenal over Chelsea after speaking to both Graham Potter and Arteta.
But Chelsea’s co-owner, Behdad Eghbali, and director of global football talent, Paul Winstanley, stepped up and made a strong sales pitch to the winger.
The pair spent eight to 10 hours pitching a move to Stamford Bridge to Mudryk and argued that he would face stiff competition for a place in Arsenal’s side due to the influence of Martinelli.
Both Eghbali and Winstanley argued that Chelsea could provide Mudryk with more of an opportunity to excel in the first-team.
They said he would play a major role in the club’s project under Potter, while arguing that game time would be harder to come by if he chose to join Arsenal.
Of course, the move ultimately came down to Chelsea offering more acceptable terms to Shakhtar, with Arsenal unwilling to meet their demands.
Palkin admitted that Chelsea’s offer had more realistic add-on fees involved in comparison to Arsenal’s, despite the fact that their bids were worth the same overall fee.
It’s interesting that Chelsea staff mentioned Martinelli during talks with Mudryk, especially as they also have Raheem Sterling in the youngster’s position.
It’s up for debate whether or not Mudryk would have got sufficient gametime in north London, especially with Martinelli and Bukayo Saka playing so well this season. But it seems that it worked in Chelsea’s favour as they used it to convince the player to go against his original choice of joining the Gunners.