How Mykhaylo Mudryk's transfer will help Ukraine's war veterans

Mykhaylo Mudryk’s £88 million move to Chelsea from Shakhtar Donetsk has prompted the Ukrainian club to launch a £20m-plus project for soldiers defending the country from

Russia’s invasion. Shakhtar president Rinat Akhmetov also revealed plans for his side to play a friendly against the Premier League giants at the Donbass Arena, which they

were forced to flee when Vladimir Putin annexed Crimea nine years ago and has lain empty since. Akhmetov issued a lengthy statement about Mudryk’s departure on Shakhtar’s

official website the morning after the midfielder was unveiled at Stamford Bridge wearing a Ukraine flag. Mudryk joined a club that, until last year, was owned by Roman

Abramovich, who had close links to Putin but who pledged to donate all profits from the sale of Chelsea to all victims of the ongoing war. Akhmetov said: “I have mixed

feelings today. On the one hand, I am happy for Mykhaylo and proud of him. This guy is leading by example, showing that talent and hard work can make the impossible possible. I am

absolutely confident that the entire Europe will acclaim Mykhaylo's brilliant and fine play. “On the other hand, I have never made it a secret that my dream is to win

European trophies. This means that players like Mudryk should be invited to our club, to our Ukrainian championship, and we should win European trophies with such players, rather

than root for them, even when they play in the world's top clubs. Unfortunately, it is impossible now, as Ukraine is fighting the horrendous and unjust war waged against us by the

Russian Federation. But I am confident that we will win. And we will play a friendly against Chelsea at Donbass Arena in a Ukrainian Donetsk.