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Arsenal: Fabrizio Romano reveals why Gunners didn’t push for Felix loan

Arsenal did not pursue a loan deal for transfer target Joao Felix as they felt the asking price was too high, Fabrizio Romano has claimed.

What’s the word?

Arsenal and Manchester United were both interested in a deal for the Portugal forward, but Atletico were asking for his full wages to be paid as well as a high loan fee.

Felix is now on the verge of a move to Chelsea, who were willing to accept these terms unlike the other two, and despite an injury to Gabriel Jesus, Mikel Arteta did not pursue Felix further as the club focus on securing Ukraine winger Mykhailo Mudryk.

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Speaking on his YouTube channel, Romano revealed that the priority is and has always been Mudryk, while the finances for Felix were not justifiable.

He said: “The feeling around Arsenal was they wanted to focus on Mudryk. The priority was, and is, Mykhailo Mudryk, he is the player they want to sign.

“They keep in contact with Shakhtar Donetsk, so for Arsenal, the main focus is Mudryk. They had conversations with Joao Felix, but they don’t want to spend around €15-16m plus taxes for the Joao Felix loan deal, so the focus is on Mykhailo Mudryk.”

Mudryk the priority

Arteta clearly wants to strengthen the depth of his attack, and arguably neither Mudryk nor Felix would have arrived as a starter considering the form of Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli, with the duo currently the Gunners’ joint-top goalscorers from the wing.

Mudryk would be a signing for the long term in addition to increasing the quality of the attacking options, whereas a short-term loan for Felix will have only been of benefit for this season.

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Arsenal are top at Christmas but when was the last time they won the league title from this position?

Therefore, we feel Arsenal are right to prioritise the Mudryk deal, and if they can secure the 22-year-old’s signature, it is a signing which could reap big rewards over the coming years.