The 27-year-old winger has been linked to two of the top clubs in the Premier League, with Arsenal and Manchester United battling it out to land the Borussia Dortmund attacker. However it now looks like Dortmund will not allow this to happen even if it means letting him go for free next summer.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan has been one of Arsenal’s top transfer targets for quite some time now, and the Gunners were recently joined by Premier League rivals Manchester United in the race to sign the Armenian winger. In fact, the Red Devils even emerged as top contenders with Mkhitaryan reportedly keen on a move to Old Tafford.
However, all the speculation has been seemingly put to rest by Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke. He stated that even though contract negotiations have hit a dead end and Mkhitaryan could leave for free next summer, BVB are not interested in selling him for any price this summer.
“We’ve been negotiating a new deal with Henrikh Mkhitaryan for four months,” Watzke said, according to German publication Bild.
“We now know he won’t sign an extension. There was never a promise that he can leave us prematurely.”
In this regard, the report goes on to state that Dortmund have also rejected a £19 million bid by Manchester United for Mkhitaryan and look set to follow through on their statement.
Dortmund breeding ground for great players, but not their dream club
The potential loss of Henrikh Mkhitaryan in 2017 will not be the first time that Dortmund have had one of their star players leave for free. Robert Lewandowski left them for Bundesliga rivals Bayern Munich in 2014. The club remain obstinate to keep their stars, but it looks like any player who rises into stardom from the Dortmund ranks is destined to leave them behind.
This is a summer when Dortmund have really been given a few hard knocks, with captain Mats Hummels leaving for Bayern Munich and midfielder Ilkay Gundogan joining Pep Guardiola at Manchester City. Although the Bundesliga side did make around £50 million for the two players, they were the spine of the team and it remains to be seen whether they can cope with the loss next season.