SportSoccer

Man Utd likely to face stumbling block in Mkhitaryan bid

SoccerBy Kevin Palmer
Mkhitaryan appears to fancy a move to Man Utd
Mkhitaryan appears to fancy a move to Man Utd

Manchester United’s appear to have have ambitions to sign Borussia Dortmund midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan this summer, but it will not be an easy deal for the Old Trafford club complete.

Mkhitaryan’s often quoted agent Mino Raiola has sparked a fresh wave of speculation linking his Armenian client with a move to Old Trafford, after he claimed United were his “dream club” as he prepares to enter the final year of his contract with Dortmund.

“Such an offer to join Manchester United might only come once in a lifetime for a player and nobody can guarantee us that the door will still be open for Micki next season,” Raiola was quoted by German newspaper Bild.

“Manchester are Micki’s dream club, he wants to join them by any means. My task is to represent my player’s interests. It’s known what Micki wants.

"Those in charge at BVB promised Micki months ago that he can leave the club in the summer.

"Dortmund have an official offer, but the BVB bosses are afraid of their fans. All of a sudden they say that he has to leave on a free next summer - that's very bad management."

However, Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke has dismissed those claims, even though he now admits the Armenian will not remain at his club beyond next season.

"We've been negotiating with Henrikh Mkhitaryan for four months," Watzke told Bild.

"We now know he won't sign an extension. There was never a promise that he could leave us early and he will stay for next season."

In a summer when Dortmund have already lost the services of talismanic defender Mats Hummels to Bayern Munich and Ilkay Gundogan made the move to join Manchester City, the German club are determined to hang on to their remaining star names.

Mkhitaryan’s apparent eagerness to join United may shift this story forward in the coming days, with a fee of around £20m being mentioned due to the fact that he will be out of contract next summer.

It is hardly surprising that new boss Jose Mourinho is eying up Mkhitaryan after he notched up a glut of goals and assists in with Dortmund last season and at the age of 27, he should be about to reach his prime.

Of course, this could be a play from agent Raiola to get Mkhitaryan a bumper new deal with Dortmund or force through a move to another club, but it seems as if the players has his heart set on a move to United.