Jose Mourinho has explained the reasonings behind his decision to sign Henrikh Mkhitaryan from Borussia Dortmund.
Having had a hand in over 50 goals last season for Dortmund, Mkhitaryan was one of the best playmakers in Europe and joins Man United after a season where we finished fifth in the Premier League on goal difference alone. In that regard, he’s the perfect signing.
Going into more depth, Mourinho touches on Mkhitaryan’s ‘collective play’ and his ability to be a key part of the team as a whole.
Speaking about Mkhitaryan, Jose said: “Well first of all, let me say that we have brought in the player who was voted the best player in the French league [Zlatan] and with Micki we have brought the player who was voted the best player of the Bundesliga,” Jose told MUTV’s Stewart Gardner.
“He was voted not by the fans, not by the journalists but voted by the fellow players and that is what means more, I believe, because when your fellow players are the ones that choose you then it means a lot.
“Micki is a fantastic player and what I like more is something that is undeniable, which is the number of goals that he scores by not being a striker. His number of goals per season is really high for somebody that is not a striker. The number of assists is also very clear because it shows clearly his creativity, his vision and his concept of collective play, and that is something that I believe is really important for a club like us.
“We try to be dominant and will, for sure, face teams with a very defensive profile which is his capacity of acceleration of the game. He has a change of speed with the ball and without the ball, and that is very, very important for a club like ours.”
I think Mourinho’s points about Mkhitaryan being a team player are a crucial point. Jose loves his attackers to be just as drive out of possession as they are with the ball at their feet – that’s an asset to Henrikh’s game which he’s always had. He is extremely tenacious and is the perfect type of winger for Mourinho.
With Mkhitaryan on the right hand side and Anthony Martial on the left, United will have a pair of wide players who strike fear into any defence and with Mourinho in charge, United really are shaping up to be title contenders next season.