Former Leeds United star urges Newcastle United to ‘break the budget’ for key transfer target

The Magpies are one of a number of admirers of the talented winger.
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Newcastle United have been warned they could miss out on highly-rated winger Mykhalo Mudryk unless they ‘break their budget’.

The Magpies are one of several clubs said to be interested in the in-form Shakhtar Donetsk star after he hit form over the last 12 months. Mudryk has scored nine goals and provided eight assists in 17 appearances in all competitions so far this season and found the net in Champions League games against RB Leipzig and Celtic.

His form over the last year has led to international recoginition after he made his senior Ukraine debut in a 3-1 win against Scotland before going on to win a further seven caps. Arsenal, Everton and Newcastle have all been linked with a move for the winger - but they faced a warning from Shakhtar director Carlo Nicollini as he insisted his club would not allow their prize asset to depart on a cut-price deal.

He told CalcioMercato: “We are not obliged to sell, we do not want to make phenomena. We don’t want to shoot figures that aren’t realistic. But in this team, he is the most decisive. If you want to take on certain players who make a difference in the top clubs, you also need the right money.”

Former Leeds United and Middlesbrough forward Noel Whelan agreed that it could prove to be a costly move for Newcastle and insisted the Magpies would have to ‘cave to those demands’ to sign the winger. He told Football Insider: “Newcastle are in a really good position and they’re ahead of schedule in that project right now. But January is a notoriously difficult window to get transfers done. Shakhtar hold all the cards right now. If you desperately want him and need him, then Newcastle have to be prepared to break the budget.

“That’s what the January window is. You’re paying above and beyond, but if you’re serious about finishing in the top four – it could be worth it. If you leave it, he could go somewhere else. To get in there first and in January, I think Newcastle will have to cave to those demands.”

Mudryk is said to be one player under consideration to improve United’s options in wide positions, with long-serving winger Matt Ritchie reportedly set to depart during the January transfer window. Former club Portsmouth are believed to be one of the club interested in the former Scotland international.