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Russian prodigy comments on failed Chelsea move — RT Sport News

Russian midfielder Arsen Zakharyan has expressed hope that his transfer to Premier League giants Chelsea can be completed this winter after a move fell through last week due to issues transferring funds to Dynamo Moscow amid sanctions on the Russian economy.  

Zakharyan, 19, was reported as being on the verge of a move to the West London club before Dynamo confirmed that financial problems surrounding the deal had not been resolved in time before European football’s summer transfer window closed on September 1.

The talented teenager will remain at Dynamo for the time being, although Chelsea and the Russian club are said to have a “verbal agreement” that he will make the switch once problems are ironed out regarding the transfer of the fee – said to be €15 million ($14.9 million/£13 million).

Zakharyan spoke for the first time about the failed deal after helping Dynamo to a 2-1 Russian Premier League win against Ural in the capital on Saturday.

“I knew that Chelsea were interested in me back in the winter. It’s nice for me to have advances like that, that clubs like that are watching me,” the attacking midfielder told Match TV.  

“I’ll try to prove myself even more. Now it didn’t work out, I understand it and accept it. I’ll keep trying and training.”

Zakharyan revealed that respected Italian transfer guru Fabrizio Romano had been in touch with him as the proposed deal panned out, saying: “Fabrizio Romano wrote to me and asked: ‘When are you coming?’ I think he was aware that everything would have happened if it wasn’t for this difficult situation.

“I hope everything will be fine [with the transfer]. Perhaps in winter,” Zakharyan added.

Russian media reports cited issues with the English FA and Barclays bank as holding up the deal, amid broader UK sanctions against the Russian economy.

Dmitry Gafin, a member of Dynamo’s board of directors, outlined the snags – also confirming Chelsea’s interest last winter, before the club underwent ownership changes and Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich was forced to sell up.

“For us, this is a big event – the fact that we received an offer from European giants for Arsen,” Gafin told RB Sport.

“He’s a graduate of our academy, and besides the opportunity to earn money, this is a huge advertisement not only in terms of a player, but also in terms of attracting young players to our club. 

“As for the transfer, the situation is very simple – we couldn’t create a situation where a player would leave us and we wouldn’t receive money for him. 

“There wasn’t enough time – from the moment the offer was received until the window closed – to resolve the technical issue.

“It’s not just about the [English] FA — in fact, the federation receives instructions from the clubs, and then there’s Barclays bank, which should credit this money to our account. 

“The English side took time to work out the nuances, and that time – 5-6 days – wasn’t enough to clarify all the points…

“We have a verbal agreement [with Chelsea] that we will continue contact and are ready to listen to each other. 

“This applies not only to English clubs, but also to others,” Gafin warned, noting that Zakharyan had attracted interest from elsewhere.

Gafin promised that Dynamo would not try to keep hold of Zakharyan indefinitely, considering the youngster’s status as among world football’s brightest young talents.

“We know Arsen well, he has an inner core, he lives for football,” said Gafin.

“We all understand that the next few months are extremely important for him. Arsen should show his level and even a little bit higher. 

“He has the eyes of more scouts and clubs than ever before. He understands this, he is aware that we are not going to keep him in a golden cage.”

Abramovich uninvolved in Russian prodigy’s proposed Chelsea move – media

Zakharyan has made more than 50 appearances for Dynamo, scoring 13 times and registering 16 assists.

He has won four caps for the senior Russian national team, becoming the country’s youngest ever outfield player when making his debut at the age of 18 in a World Cup qualifier against Croatia last September.

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