Arsenal winger Henrikh Mkhitaryan has seemingly taken another subtle jab at his former manager at Manchester United, Jose Mourinho, and it was on the same exact dimension as the last one. Mkhitaryan didn’t mention Mourinho by name, but given what he said, and what the Armenian obviously knows about the reputation Mourinho holds worldwide in the football community, it’s clear the former United man was aware of how his remarks would be interpreted.
After completing his transfer from Arsenal to United in January, Mkhitaryan said on Jan. 30 that he’s happy to be “play offensive football” in north London. Given the strong reputation Mourinho has as an overly defensive minded manager, it’s a thinly veiled swipe at his former boss.
Mkhitaryan brought that narrative back this week in an interview with ESPN FC.
“In the last year I played in Dortmund with Klopp, Dortmund was playing very good football and I think it seems to be a bit similar comparing Arsenal to Dortmund,” he told ESPN.
“I’m very happy to be here. I get pleasure playing offensive football and being part of Arsenal. Every offensive player wants to play offensive football. For me as well, I always love to play offensive football, it’s not easy to defend all the time.
“It’s necessary to do the best for the team, but in this case, when Arsenal are playing offensive football, I’m trying to give everything I can give to the team.”
It had been reported for some time that Mkhitaryan and Mourinho had some issues with one another towards the end of their time together at Old Trafford, and given some things that have transpired since the transfer swap was completed, this appears to be true. The Armenian national team coach made some public remarks that essentially verified this narrative.
Additionally, Mkhitaryan has said that his new boss at Arsenal, Arsene Wenger, is better on players than Mourinho. Given the long-standing, extremely heated personal rivalry between Wenger and Mourinho, one can only assume that’s also Mkhitaryan taking another shot at Mourinho.
Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for the Washington Times, NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, currently contributes regularly to WGN CLTV and the Tribune company’s blogging community Chicago Now.
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