Arsenal’s attempt to sign Borussia Dortmund playmaker Henrikh Mkhitaryan might not be as easy as once thought.
The Sun reported on Wednesday that Arsene Wenger is hoping to wrap up a quick deal for the Armenian, with Dortmund not putting up much resistance.
However, Norwegian journalist Jan Aage Fjortoft has provided an update on the situation that could make the situation quite messy.
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Fjortoft has claimed on Twitter that Manchester United will look to hijack Arsenal’s £25 million move for Mkhitaryan.
And in potentially more concerning news for Arsenal, Fjortoft also mentions that the midfielder shares the same agent as Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who is reportedly close to sealing a move to Old Trafford.
Mino Raiola represents both players, although it would seem unlikely that United will use this to sign Mkhitaryan given his current situation is quite different to Ibrahimovic’s. Unlike the Dortmund player, Ibrahimovic is a free agent next month.
Fjortoft wrote: “Man UTD wants to take him away from Arsenal. The Dortmund-player has the same agent as Zlatan….”
Arsenal and United fans were quick to respond.
Mkhitaryan admires Arsenal
Some were quick to remind Fjortoft of comments Mkhitaryan made in 2009, in which he openly voiced his admiration for Arsenal.
"My favourite team is Arsenal," Mkhitaryan told UEFA. "I like their attacking play and fast style. Moreover, Arsene Wenger puts faith in young players while demanding results at the same time. I like that and want to play there one day."
So if it is a straight battle between the two Premier League clubs, there is a clear favourite.
United's interest in Pogba
Yet Mkhitaryan would be wise to consider which team he is more likely to enjoy success at. United’s demise since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013 could be about to come to a halt now that Jose Mourinho is in charge and if the Portuguese is able to attract Paul Pogba to Old Trafford as well as Ibrahimovic, the Red Devils will be well placed to challenge for the title.
According to the Independent, United will have to pay £78.1 million to sign the Juventus midfielder, who they allowed to leave in 2012 on a free transfer.
But his emergence as one of Europe’s most dynamic midfielders has caught widespread attention and United, Barcelona and Real Madrid are all interested in his services.
The thought of Pogba and Mkhitaryan supplying passes to Ibrahimovic next season is exciting for United fans who had to endure such stale football under Louis van Gaal.
Arsenal’s version could be Mkhitaryan assisting Jamie Vardy. The Gunners have triggered Vardy’s release clause and the decision to stay or leave now rests in the Leicester City striker’s hands.