Manchester United summer signing Henrikh Mkhitaryan has been used sparingly by manager Jose Mourinho thus far in the 2016/17 season and has begun to grow frustrated at being played out of position by the Portuguese.
Jose Mourinho paid a reported £26 million to Borussia Dortmund to secure the services of their star attacker Henrikh Mkhitaryan. With 11 goals and 15 assists last season, the signing of the Armenian for a relatively low price seemed to be a good piece of business by the Manchester United board.
Four games into the season, however, Mkhitaryan is still struggling to adapt to the physicality of the Premier League. The Armenian was surprisingly named in Mourinho’s starting lineup for the Manchester derby, but failed to impact proceedings from the right flank.
Despite showing signs of brilliance in his cameo against Hull City two weeks ago, the 27-year-old struggled against Manchester City and was substituted at half time for Ander Herrera.
According to Neil Custis of the Sun, Mkhitaryan has grown frustrated with his role in the team under Jose Mourinho. As per the report, the Armenian prefers playing in the number 10 role which is currently occupied by Wayne Rooney.
However, the speculation seems strange given his success playing from the right wing for Dortmund in the 2015/16 season. It was Shinji Kagawa who was predominantly used as an attacking midfielder playing in-behind the striker. The best quality of the Armenian’s game is his versatility and the ability to play in varied positions behind the striker.
Also, Mkhitaryan’s pace and dribbling ability arguably make him more suited to a position on the wings rather than in the centre. Given United’s lack of quality right wingers, Mourinho may see a regular option for the future in the former Dortmund man.
Hampered by injury issues, Mkhitaryan has not begun the season with flying colours. But once he returns to full fitness and gets accustomed to life in England’s top tier, he could well develop into Manchester United’s creator-in-chief.