Manchester United’s interest in signing Borussia Dortmund star Henrikh Mkhitaryan is genuine.
After being knocked back with their initial £19 million bid, the Red Devils have come back with another offer closer to Dortmund’s £31m evaluation.
Clearly, Jose Mourinho is confident that Dortmund’s resolve can be broken. The Bundesliga club are desperate to keep hold of the Armenian but as the saying goes, every player has his price.
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According to the Mirror, United have tabled an improved bid of £28m with add-ons. The total bid is reported to be just below the asking price.
The Premier League club are confident that a deal can be agreed, which will take their summer spending to around £60m after the £30m signing of Eric Bailly was confirmed earlier this month.
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One man who has been eager to complete the deal is Mkhitaryan’s agent, Mino Raiola. He approved United’s interest by confirming that his client wants to join the Red Devils.
“Manchester are Micki’s dream club, he wants to join them by any means. It would be a sin to stop talking,” Raiola is quoted as saying by the Mirror.
“We [Raiola and Dortmund] have both taken very different views and fight for them like lions.”
Once in a lifetime opportunity
Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke made BVB’s stance clear by saying: “We have intensely discussed the question of an early transfer and came to the conclusion that Mkhitaryan will stay next season,” per the Daily Mail.
But Raiola wants Dortmund to grant Mkhitaryan a “once in a lifetime” opportunity.
“Watzke walks 180 degrees into one direction and I 180 degrees into the other. But even though it does not look like it right now, I still hope for a sensible solution,” Raiola, who includes Zlatan Ibrahimovic among his clients, added.
“Such an offer to join Manchester United might only come once in a lifetime for a player. Nobody can guarantee us that the door will still be open for Micki next season.”
Signing Mkhitaryan would represent a real coup for United, and not simply because he’s an outstanding player.
He’s giving up Champions League football to come and play for a team that can only offer Europa League football and that has finished seventh and fifth in two of its previous three seasons.
There’s no doubt his wages will be increased at United but it’s a clear sign of Mourinho’s influence.
It’s also looking likely that the Portuguese will lure Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Old Trafford. Sky Sports reported last week that personal terms have been agreed and the 34-year-old will have a medical after Euro 2016.
For the first time in a while, there’s optimism surrounding the red half of Manchester.