Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s move to Arsenal has softened the blow that comes with losing a player of Alexis Sanchez’s quality.
The Armenian playmaker will undergo a medical at Arsenal today - Sanchez will do the same at Manchester United - as the transfer saga is finally brought to an end.
According to David Ornstein of BBC Sport, the deal is a straight swap; no money is involved.
It’s a transfer that suits all parties, really. Sanchez gets to play for a club that can compete for major trophies and Mkhitaryan, whose confidence is clearly shot, has an opportunity to revive his career at a team that suits his style of play.
The former Borussia Dortmund man enjoyed some fine moments during his time in Manchester. United supporters will never forget that scorpion kick against Sunderland, or his goal in United’s Europa League final win over Ajax last year.
It seemed as though Mkhitaryan had turned things around after a miserable start to his United career. He recorded five assists in August and was a regular in the starting line-up.
But his situation started to deteriorate and he’s played just once in January, in the 2-0 FA Cup win over Derby. Back in November, Mourinho accused him of “disappearing” in games.
Fowler thinks he knows why Jose is selling Mkhi
Liverpool legend Robbie Fowler has another reason to believe Mourinho is getting rid of the 29-year-old.
Writing in his column for the Mirror, Fowler suggested that Mkhitaryan’s poor work rate is to blame for his departure.
Remember, Mourinho criticised Kevin De Bruyne’s work rate before selling him at Chelsea.
Fowler also believes there's something more to Mkhitaryan's signing that hasn't been told.
Fowler wrote: “It really didn’t work out for [Mkhitaryan] with Mourinho and it will be a good thing for him to get out of Old Trafford.
“I watched him a lot a few years ago and saw someone with a special kind of magic. He can score goals and create them too, so I don’t know why it didn’t work out for him at United.
“It was even more puzzling because Mourinho apparently signed him – and that usually makes managers far more indulgent. Which rather suggests there’s more to that signing than anyone at Old Trafford is saying.
“Maybe his work-rate wasn’t right for Mourinho - but then neither was Kevin De Bruyne’s.”
Mourinho is replacing a player who often goes missing in matches with one of the Premier League’s hardest working stars, and he’s not spending a penny.
It really is a great deal of business.
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