Henrihk Mhikitaryan the Sacrificial Lamb, Alexis Sanchez, The Missing Piece Of Man United’s Attacking Puzzle, But Something’s Gotta Give.
Although the circumstances surrounding the Alexis Sanchez -United, Henrikh Mhkitaryan-Arsenal Swap may have differed, the exit of both players from their respective clubs was really only a matter of when, not if.
For Alexis Sanchez, the technicalities of the January transfer window proved a perfect timing as Manchester United capitalized on the indecision of their cross-city rivals, who for reasons best known to them, would rather stick to Sergio Aguero and the ever reliable Gabriel Jesus who’s expected to recover fully in a fortnight.
It’s still not quite clear if Jose Mourinho ever really believed in the abilities of Henrikh Mkhitaryan from the onset, the Armenian never made it into Jose’s good books, often relegated to the bench, a penance for sins even the gods of Manchester would admit he didn’t commit;
What’s clear however, is the fact that the Red Devils boss didn’t hesitate when the opportunity to offload the Armenian came begging, a small price to pay for the services of Almighty Alexis.
El Nino Maravilla, diminutive, energetic and hungry for trophies, yet, like Thierry Henry and Ashley Cole, could no longer cope with the stench from Arsenal’s lack of ambition, and with the anxiety at Old Trafford getting more intense than ever, the Chilean couldn’t pass on the opportunity when Glazer and co came calling.
At Old Trafford, there’s more belief, more ambition, more potential to win trophies, at the Emirates, nothing really emerges when one looks above the FA Cup horizon, Alexis Sanchez wasn’t making a decision, he was simply acting upon a decision he had taken towards the end of the 2016/17 season, Yet another disappointing campaign in an Arsenal shirt.
Henrikh Mhkitaryan, not one to shy away from grabbing opportunities, is no doubt a valuable replacement for Alexis, and it’s not just the Arsenal number 7 shirt that he’ll be wearing, but the fact that he brings as much threat and Creativity going forward with the ball
Although the Gunners already boast the services of Mesut Ozil, statistically the best assist provider in the Premier League since 2013/14, Mhikitaryan’s ability to create chances, seize control of crucial moments and win games single-handedly, is what excites Arsenal fans the most.
Alexis Sanchez brought the complete package to the emirates, and even though the only thing he won’t be bringing to Old Trafford is his Arsenal kits (make no mistake about it, he’ll bring his dogs), the Manchester United faithful will be more than pleased with the Chilean’s toughness, versatility, and indefatigable spirit.
The Chilean shares a lot in common with Heno, from Offensive creativity, to brilliant link up plays, to menacing attacking runs, but it’s the objective behind the swap that lays bare in open fields, what Arsenal and Man United’s parallel number 7s really crave at the moment.
Mkhitaryan couldn’t have had a better spell at the Theatre of dreams, even the bitter romance with Jose Mourinho didn’t keep the former Dortmund man from helping the Reds win the Europa League and book a return ticket to the Champions League, a tournament he’ll now have to wait a little longer to partake in.
At 29, Alexis Sanchez no longer looks like he’s in search of adventures, here’s a man whose desire to win has driven him straight into the sparkling corridors of the most successful club in England.
With 88 appearances, 39 goals and 6 trophies in three years at the Nou Camp, Sanchez felt the time was right for new adventures and more regular first team football, Arsenal on the other end, needed a breath of fresh attacking air
At Barcelona, the only thing more disappointing than lack of play time was the fact that the Blaugrana failed to win the Champions League between 2012 and 2014, bisecting their most recent triumphs between 2011 and 2015, before he joined, and after he left.
Although at International level, the La Roja forward couldn’t have asked for better following back-to-back Copa America triumphs in 2015 and 2016, it is thirst for what remains, the most coveted trophy in Europe, that defines the Chilean’s move to the Red halve of Manchester.
The Premier league title could come too, but anyone putting their money on Manchester United winning the League this season, will do well to invest in Bitcoins first and then plan towards the 2018/19 campaign.
Jose Mourinho’s men are not necessarily favorites to win the aforementioned trophies but the introduction of Alexis Sanchez into the locker room will not doubt get the fans believing again, and perhaps, that missing piece in United’s offensive puzzle has finally been solved.
For Henrikh Mkhitaryan, it’s more about regular first team football than it is about silverware, at the Emirates, ambitions aren’t so high, the dreams never above average; it’s just about playing the Professor’s way and hoping fortune favors the creative, Mhki isn’t really asking for much
Winning the Premier League and the Champions League doesn’t seem feasible for the gunners as we speak, European qualification is hanging in the balance; but the last thing the Armenian forward wants is silverware, here’s a man who just wants to play football, who understands that it’s all about the beautiful game, the club and the fans
Thus, is it any surprising that Man United fans wrote him an open letter??
It took me quite some time to put my feelings into words following your departure. But today, I decided to sit down a moment and write thoughtlessly.
Today, I am not writing for me. I am writing in the name of every fan at Manchester United.
This letter is not mine. This letter is ours… because WE are UNITED!
We know there have been a lot of talks regarding your transfer. We are not here to judge either the club or the coach choices, we are here to react as fans, as a family, to show you our love.
Why are we writing a letter to you? Because we understand you could have left in another way. And we don’t want you to think all the fans wished you to leave. True fans know how to take care of their players.
Of course, sometimes football is harsh and things don’t always turn out as expected, but we want you to know we will never forget your time at United.
We will never forget that you saved us the Europa League. It may just be a little thing, but your goal sealed our Champions League return. We can thank you for that.
Not to mention your scorpion kick against Sunderland… that goal deserves its place among the most beautiful goals in the club history.
Anyway, just so you know you are a very talented player with a golden heart and lots of qualities.
We wish you much success at Arsenal and all the best in the future.
Don’t ever forget who you are.
Arsenal may have to veer off the well-worn path in their quest for Champions league football next season, putting all their cards on the table to win the Europa league and secure automatic qualification, it worked for Jose Mourinho last season, it could work for Wenger now, after all, the Gunners’ new number 7 knows a thing or two about winnng the Europa league
For Alexis Sanchez, Champions league football is already staring him in the face as United gear up for a last-16 clash against La Liga outfit Sevilla, hopefully, the Chilean can finally help Jose Mourinho win his third Champions league as a manager.
Until then, fingers crossed.