Connect in the back of the net

Manchester United are at the latter stages of completing the transfer of Henrikh Mkhitaryan from German side Borussia Dortmund, according to reports by Sky Sports.

The transfer fee is at a speculated £26.5 million, one that suffices his agility and game changing ability. Should the switch be completed without any glitches, Mkhitaryan will become the second signing for the Jose Mourinho era at Old Trafford with Eric Bailly being the maiden signing for the former Chelsea boss.

With slightly over a month since his appointment as Manchester United manager, Mourinho has been his filling his boots with ammo for next season: having already extended long term contracts for academy graduates Cameron Borthwick-Jackson and Marcus Rashford.

 

Who exactly is Henrikh Mkhitaryan?

Born in 21 January 1989 in Armenia, Mkhitaryan played a youth for local side Pyunik before gaining promotion to the senior team.

He left for Ukraine in 2009 where he would play for Metalurh Donetsk and Shakhtar Donetsk for the next four years. His breakthrough however came in 2013 when he was signed by the then BVB manager Jurgen Klopp.

Save for being the Armenian skipper, the 27-year old midfielder is also his nation’s all time goal scorer with 19 goals in 59 appearances- including Armenia’s first hat-trick in a competitive match.

In three years at Dortmund, Mkhitaryan found the back of the net 41 times in 140 appearances in all competitions.

 

Where could he play?

This is perhaps the most mind boggling question of them all. Adorning the number 10 jersey for both club and country is an easy give away that Mkhitaryan is an attacking midfielder.

The only problem is that Manchester United has a plethora of talent in attacking midfield, and his acquisition could only spell doom for the multiple players who have in the past played in that role.

One of those players is Wayne Rooney. The 30-year old has over the years played as United’s preferred number 10, a position in which he has exceeded and excelled in.

His ability to adopt his game in a deeper midfield role has however seen him maintain his position at Old Trafford beyond his prime years. Doubling up as skipper for both United and The Three Lions, Mourinho wouldn’t want to boils fans blood by axing out the golden boy of English football on his first season at the Theatre of Dreams.

 

What will happen to Mata?

A fan favorite who however won’t be spared in Juan Mata. The feud between Mata and Mourinho transcends their United ties as it goes back to their time in Chelsea. The Spaniard is seemingly on the exit door and could be rightly joined by his countryman Ander Herrera.

With the future of Jesse Lingard and Adnan Januzaj uncertain, Henrikh Mkhitaryan has without a doubt earned his place in Mourinho’s starting XI.

His involvement in 26 goals in 31 appearances last season is impressive to say the least, but the most mouthwatering prospect is playing him behind Zlatan Ibrahimovic: with Martial and Rashford on the flanks.

 

Written by Brian Humphrey

Follow Brian on Twitter @brihum

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