Dortmund CEO plays down links to £35m Man Utd misfit Henrikh Mkhitaryan

Dortmund CEO plays down links to £35m Man Utd misfit Henrikh Mkhitaryan

Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke says a January move to re-sign Manchester United midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan only appears likely with a “great deal of imagination.”

Despite starting the season in fine form, picking up three assists in five games, the Armenian has seen his star wane following poor performances and was left out of the squad entirely for matches against Basel and Newcastle after being told by manager Jose Mourinho he had been “disappearing” in games.

Mkhitaryan, 28, did feature for United in their Carabao Cup defeat to Bristol City, and also came on as a substitute in recent league draws with Leicester City and Burnley. But he has not started since the 1-0 Chelsea loss in early November.

The situation led to suggestions Mkhitaryan, who was signed from the BVB in 2016 for £26 million, could leave in January.

“I know the economic details of his transfer to Man United like nobody else,” Hans-Joachim Watzke, the Dortmund CEO, told Bild when asked about the rumours.

“That’s why [his return] is only conceivable with a great deal of imagination.”

It is thought the Armenian captain will command a fee upwards of £35m, according to the Daily Mail, but United manager Mourinho intimated last week that the player could leave, telling a news conference “every player has his price.”

Man Utd teammates unable to surpass Mkhitaryan assist record

Mkhitaryan’s fast start means he’s still second for assists per 90 minutes in the league

Despite the slow patch and period out of the squad entirely, Mkhitaryan is second in the league for assists per 90 minutes among players that have featured for their side 10 times or more.

He has five assists overall, which remains the joint-highest total at United.

It is clear the attacking player has pedigree, despite an off-spell, but it remains to be seen whether he’ll leave United or become a central figure at the club once more.