A swap deal between Manchester United and Arsenal for Alexis Sanchez and Henrikh Mkhitaryan will only go through if Mino Raiola agrees to the terms offered to the Armenian.
The agent, whose clients also include Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic, made it clear on Tuesday that he would not rush to complete a deal with the Gunners for Mkhitaryan.
Jose Mourinho noted at his press conference earlier today that Man United were close to signing Sanchez but made it clear that no deal had been done yet.
And the BBC‘s David Ornstein has confirmed the Mkhitaryan deal will only go through if Raiola is satisfied.
Mkhitaryan deal up to Raiola. If he agrees it happens, if doesn't it won't. No issue with #MUFC or player. To clarify on Malcolm, reason (among a few) #AFC out was price/value relative to experience – not inexperience alone. Not sure on #THFC reports but Pochettino is a huge fan
— David Ornstein (@bbcsport_david) January 19, 2018
This is fitting example of why Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis described Raiola as “a pain in the backside” and why Sir Alex Ferguson, taking it slightly further, labelled him as a “shit-bag”.
Raiola, as is always the case, is angling this entire deal towards his pocket, luring Arsenal into the false pretence that he is willing to meet in the middle while actually having no inclination to do so, making any negotiating situation so painful that those on the other side of the table only have two options: walk away from the deal altogether or simply relent.
Supporters will desperately hope that it ends up being the latter and if you want to discover more in terms of what odds you can get for anything else happening with the Sanchez deal, make sure to check this out.