Saturday 15 December 2018

Mkhitaryan holds key to Sanchez deal

Mkhitaryan has fallen out of favour under Mourinho. Photo: Getty
Mkhitaryan has fallen out of favour under Mourinho. Photo: Getty

James Ducker

The agent of Henrikh Mkhitaryan has claimed Manchester United's prospects of signing Alexis Sanchez will hinge on the Armenia playmaker joining Arsenal.

But Mino Raiola has claimed that a deal for Mkhitaryan to move to Arsenal is a "long way off" and that his client will not be pushed into leave Untied.

Arsenal are believed to want around £35m for Sanchez but United have offered Mkhitaryan - who is valued at a similar fee - to the London club, who lost out to United for the player when he joined the Manchester club for £26.3m in 2016. Raiola believes Mkhitaryan would be a "great" signing for Arsenal and has told the club they will need to make the 28-year-old a very good offer. Mkhitaryan has fallen out of favour under Mourinho but Raiola insisted the player has "no problem" with the manager and that Mkhitaryan was not averse to staying at United for the rest of the season and reviewing his options in the summer, when he will enter the final two years of his contract.

Raiola also scoffed at the view that Mkhitaryan is being used as a makeweight in a deal for Sanchez. "Sanchez is part of Mkhi's deal, not the other way around," said Raiola. "Without him, Sanchez simply cannot go to United. Mkhi is going to do what is best for him. Mkhi's problems at Man Utd are purely related to playing football. It is not personal. He doesn't have to leave.

"This is a great deal for Arsenal. They need better, younger players and they have to invest. So it's up to Arsenal to put a deal in place and right now a deal is a long way off." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

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