Photo: Henrikh Mkhitaryan training with first team squad at Carrington ahead of Arsenal move

by Leo Nieboer

Henrikh Mkhitaryan has been training with the Manchester United first team for what is likely to be for the last time as he nears a move to Arsenal.

Arsene Wenger noted earlier today that Sanchez would move to Old Trafford as part of a swap deal with the Armenian over the next 24 hours, adding that latter’s wages – thought to be a potential stumbling block – were not a problem.

Gianluca di Marzio also revealed on Thursday morning that Mkhitaryan’s agent Mino Raiola was in London finalising the details of his client’s move to the Emirates.

And Mkhitaryan, probably for the last time, was seen smiling with teammates after ending up on the winning side of a drill in training.

We should not regard Mkhitaryan with resentment or contempt as he heads towards the Old Trafford exit door.

This is a man blessed with unquestionable talent, and he provided moments we will never forget: that scorpion kick against Sunderland and, of course, the crucial second goal in the Europa League final – crowning a superb goalscoring run in Europe and ensuring United’s return to the big time.

We may indeed look back at the moment a few years from now and appreciate its significance, but the overriding feature of his time here was a palpable sense of brittleness – a disposition to disappear from games and lose confidence very quickly.

He had the capacity to wow us, but not the temperament to play under Mourinho at this level. The player coming in as a direct replacement, however, feels perfectly tailored to the 54-year-old’s mental approach.

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