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October 2016
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Henrikh Mkhitaryan: the ten facts that tell us exactly what is going on with his transfer

By Sir Hardly Anyone (whose claim for overtime is in the post)


FACT 1:  Henrikh Mkhitaryan will not extend his contract at Borussia Dortmund, the club have confirmed.

This certainly does seem to be a fact, in that every report that mentions this, confirms the point.  He’s got one year left on the Dortmund contract, he won’t extend, and so the pressure is on for Dortmund to flog him off now or lose him on a free walk-away next summer.

FACT 2: Dortmund will force him to stay

Although this seems unlikely, this has been written in a number of places.  The argument is that Dortmund are fed up with player power and want to show everyone who is the boss.

The trouble with this is not just the loss of a player for nothing, but also given that he seems to be saying publicly that he will not sign another contract, the fans almost certainly will turn against him.  Given that there is a bit of mumbling about how Arsenal fans would react if Vardy now said he wants Arsenal, a man playing out a whole season, and refusing to re-sign won’t go down well, and won’t do his playing career much good, and his form is bound to decline.

FACT 3: He’s going to Man U – that is the only place he wants to go

Mkhitaryan is reported to have said bits and pieces about this and his agent Mino Raiola has talked his client up for a move to Manchester United.  But no one has reported that Man U have actually made a bid or are opening discussions.

FACT 4: He’s going to Arsenal – the only club to have put in a bid

That latter point seems to be true, in as much as anything is true in this story.  All the various reports suggest that Arsenal have indeed made a bid.

FACT 5: His sister knows, and what she knows is Arsenal, Arsenal, Arsenal

Monika Mkhitaryan works for Uefa and apparently doesn’t follow a single football club on LinkedIn – other than Arsenal.

Which by and large tells us not much, assuming it is true.

FACT 6:  Chelsea have put in a bid

There seems to be no evidence of this at all.  I know that the notion of a journalist making this stuff up seems a bit far fetched, but in this case, that is how it seems.

FACT 7:  He’s not suitable

When the Metro says, “there may be legitimate concerns about Mkhitaryan’s consistency and mentality” that probably translates into them suggesting he’s an erratic nutter.  But that’s just the sort of player Wenger likes right?

Well, actually, no.
FACT 8.  It is all agent make believe

The agent is Mino Raiola – whom the Metro calls the “notorious Mino Raiola”.   Apparently he also represents Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Paul Pogba.  Anyway the argument is that Raiola is the person who has been beefing up the speculation over Mkhitaryan’s future this summer by talking up a potential move to Manchester United.  Apparently they know nothing about it.

FACT 9.  Arsenal don’t need him

Do we need another attacking midfield player?  Is Mkhitaryan going to replace Theo, or replace Ramsey, or… just be another player ready for all the injuries we will get?   Except the figures show we tend not to get too many when compared with others.

So maybe that is true.  We don’t actually need him.

FACT 10.  In fact no one needs him

Even the Metro has realised that it is very hard to know quite what Jose Mourinho is up to at Very Old Trafford.  The clue would be the sale of Juan Mata, Memphis Depay or Ander Herrera, but is that really going to be his priority?  Seems unlikely.

As for Chelsea where is he going to play if Chelsea go for a 3-5-2 format.  He isn’t a wide player who hugs the touchline, he plays inside and runs into the box.  Or are Chelsea giving up on Hazard and shipping him out, with Mk as the replacement?   Or is that what will happen to Oscar?

Or is it fantasy.

The post-analysis in-depth editorial discussion and decision making:

Editor: That headline doesn’t fit what you have written

Sir H: Quite so dear boy, I’m a journalist

Editor: No you’re not, you’re an uppity member of the aristocracy

Sir H: How dare you sir?

Editor: Oh bugger off.

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18 comments to Henrikh Mkhitaryan: the ten facts that tell us exactly what is going on with his transfer

  • colario

    Subject: Reading Woman

    One morning the husband returns after several hours of fishing and
    decides to take a nap. Although not familiar with the lake, the wife
    decides to take the boat out.

    She motors out a short distance, anchors, and reads her book.

    Along comes a game warden in his boat. He pulls up alongside the woman
    and says, “Good morning Ma’am. What are you doing?”

    “Reading a book,” she replies, (thinking, “Isn’t that obvious”).

    “You’re in a restricted fishing area,” he informs her.

    “I’m sorry officer, but I’m not fishing, I’m reading.”

    “Yes, but you have all the equipment. For all I know you could start at any moment. I’ll have to take you in and write you up.”

    “If you do that, I’ll have to charge you with sexual assault,” says the

    “But I haven’t even touched you!” says the game warden.

    “That’s true, but you have all the equipment. For all I know you could
    start at any moment.”

    “Have a nice day ma’am”, and he left.

    MORAL: Never argue with a woman who reads. It’s likely she can also

  • laos gooner

    Well done Sir Hardly on point number 6. I am still chuckling whilst writing. Very good spot on numbers 9 and 10. They’ll make a journalist of you yet Sir.

  • SamuelAkinsolaAdebosin

    Sir Hardly, every Gooner has been waiting to hear which marquee player will Arsenal sign next after they’ve signed Granit Xhaka.

    The majority opinions of the Gooners including that of myself are favouring the believes in some football experts quarters that Arsenal will need to bring in 3 top top caliber quality players of a CB, a Striker & a DMF before the start of next season’s campaign.

    But the Boss has already succeeded at bringing in a DMF – Xhaka. Leaving the remaining 2 positions of a 2nd naturally gifted top top striker to compete with Giroud, and then a top top quality CB that is yet to be brought on board of the Boss’ Arsenal post 2015/16 season 1st team squad revamping exercise.

    But going by the look of things as regard to this 1st team squad post season revamping exercise which has since been embarked upon by the Boss, it could also includes another midfielder – a CAMF. Otherwise, why have Arsenal submitted a bid for Henrikh Mkhiteryan, who is a CAMF that plays centrally down the line, if the Boss doesn’t see the necessity to have a new quality CAMF at the center of the Gunners’ midfield? Right?

    By the way, did Arsenal even have a top grade CAMF in their 1st team squad of last season? Santi Cazorla is s deep lying midfielder while Aaron Ramsey is principally a box to box midfielder. Arteta & Rocisky are gone. But we don’t yet know if Flamini will still have his deal renewed or not. Elneny is also more of a box to box player too like Ramsey. The Ox is a RCAMF(right central attacking midfielder?) while Ozil is the the Gunners’ central midfield playmaker. Coquelin & Xhaka are DMFs. Sanchez & Campbell are MLAP(mid left attacking players) and Walcott & Wilshere are MRAP(mid right attacking players). Welbeck is supposedly a striker.

    So, we can see one necessary element in the Arsenal midfield – a true CAMF is missing. And it’ll be good and very helpful for a successful Arsenal’s next season title challenge if the Boss can bring in a CAMF to have his midfield to be in a complete state.

    Hoping Arsenal will finally succeeded to bring in Vardy and also bring in a top top quality CB. Then of course, Arsenal will be more than ready to successfully deal with Jose Mourinho’s Man Utd, Pep Gaurdiola’s Man City and Antonio Conte’s Chelsea titles threats in next season’s titles campaign challenge.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Fact 11 . He has such an unpronounceable name – the sort that AW likes . Ask Walter , am sure he’d agree with me . But at least he HAS some vowels in it , thank god ! And I think that it quite rhymes with Victorian -if any one is thinking of suitable ditty for him.
    So for me , Deal done ! Kachink !
    NEXT !

  • WalterBroeckx

    Mkhitaryan…. sigh… when I have to write that in a match report…. 😉

  • There is nothing in the rule book to say we have to be able to pronounce his name. Call him Mac.

  • para

    Mkhitaryan, sounds more like vege-tarian!

  • WalterBroeckx

    off topic how come Clattenburg can be so excellent in the match in France and be so awful at times when Arsenal is involved….
    What a great spot that handball

  • Rosicky@Arsenal

    Excellent point Walter.These refs are too much Anti Arsenal.
    Anyway happy for Rosicky n czech for drawing there match with Croatia.Hope they beat Turkey and qualify for last 16.

  • Ken1945

    That’s because he is not under the influence of Riley at the moment.
    Think of all the things he missed in the battle of the bridge, then he gets to referee the cup final!
    One day the truth will prevail about what exactly the PGMO has been up to, just like FIFA and their scandal hit organisation.

  • Jambug


    I’ve said it many many times, that by and large our referees perform well, or at least competently, in Europe, and on International duty.

    Which makes it all the more suspect as to why they perform with such ineptitude in so many matches in the PL, especially when it comes to officiating us.

  • Stevo

    Amazing young player in the Czech team this evening, never stopped running and always found some space to work in, his vision is unbelievable and has good pace to exploit any chance to get beyond the defenders. He can be singed for nothing, what a bargain! Keep your eyes out for this outstanding talent, his name is Tomas Rosicky.

  • Stevo

    Whoops! Signed

  • OT sorry, Southampton have lost their manager Ronald K as he has signed for Everton.

  • Pat

    Also OT: so happy Tomas Rosicky got an assist for the Czech Republic. One of Arsenal’s favourite players strikes again!

  • bushido

    OOOOSSPINA save 1 penalty in the shoot out and now advance into the semi final of copa america centenario

  • rishabh

    Calling him Henrikh Targaryen would be a lot easier

  • Andy Mack

    Looking on Transfermarkt at Mino Raiolas ‘stable’ of players. Are you certain he’s not trying to flog Balotelli to us 😀