Arsenal, who are set to increase their pool of players in January, are reported to be putting immediate emphasis on the offensive flanks, with an unlikely title challenge gaining increasing steam.
What’s the word?
The Evening Standard are stating that whilst the club’s long-term goals focus on improving the central midfield and the left-sided centre-back position, the immediate priority is a winger.
Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli, as excellent as they have been, need further support, with the current crop of fringe players not receiving full faith from boss Mikel Arteta.
Mykhaylo Mudryk, who has seen his stock rise exponentially recently, is allegedly the Gunners’ top target for January, and he might fit the bill and give the flourishing outfit the instrument they need to secure a resounding finish to a campaign started with such assurance.
Mudryk could be key
Despite his young age, Mudryk has emerged as a dazzling diamond on the European stage, starring in the Champions League and catching the eye of many top suitors.
Arsenal are indeed right at the front of that list and are in all probability set to make a January bid, or at the very least a concrete enquiry, into the possibility of bringing the player to north London.
Having contributed eight goals and assists apiece this term in just 16 appearances, the 21-year-old phenom has been in scintillating form, netting three goals – including two against Scottish champions Celtic – in the Champions League group phase.
Predominantly a left winger, he would provide ample cover to the likes of Martinelli, who has been a focal point in Arsenal’s roaring attack this season, but must be managed and nurtured, especially having received a call-up to Brazil’s squad ahead of the 2022 World Cup, set to commence in a matter of days.
The £48m-rated Mudryk, who will not be participating following Ukraine’s 1-0 knockout qualifying loss to Wales, will be refreshed and raring to take the Premier League by storm, relieving some of the workload from Arsenal’s current young star and balancing the scales.
Indeed, the Gunners’ technical director Edu is scouring the market for reinforcements, with Arsenal’s title bid slowly hardening from water to ice, solidifying as the club continue to defy expectations and churn out results like true winners.
But ice can melt, and Mudryk, who was once described as a “baller” by journalist Sacha Pisani, would prove invaluable in the marathon race to the trophy, allowing Arteta to issue rotation with more regularity and ease, comforted by the notion that he yields two of football’s most talented young wingers.
With eight of Arsenal’s starting line-up from the recent win over Wolves at the Molineux going to the World Cup, Edu’s concerns over depth are to be duly noted by the senior figures at the club.
The Gunners might be exceeding expectations at present, but depth is an area that closest title rivals Manchester City trump all competitors, and one or two shrewd acquisitions in January might just be the key to rebuffing their advances and maintaining top spot right up until the finish.