Manchester United has made four new signings this season. Two among them are marquee signing for the club. Well, one would think that the marquee signing, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, and Paul Pogba will be the natural first team players for the club but then he would be wrong.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan has been hardly used in any of the games so far. While that has surprised the fans, Mourinho has explained that the omission of Mkhitaryan is strategic in nature and explained the situation.
In the press conference ahead of the match against Southampton, the Portuguese boss was asked why he was not making Mkhitaryan play the games and he replied “Options” he further continued, “I was reading the game against Leicester and I felt that we needed the speed of Jesse Lingard and, in the game against Bournemouth, that [Juan] Mata would help guard against their pressing really high. He could reach some spaces behind the line of the pressure and could be very useful for us.”
“I decided to play [Wayne] Rooney in both games, close to Zlatan [Ibrahimovic], and I didn’t start with Micki. When some managers buy players, they feel they have to protect their choices by playing the player all the time – I am not like this. Before me, comes the team and what I think is best for the team.
“I felt that Lingard and Mata were better options for the team in these matches, with the reality of the Premier League, so I made that decision.
“I keep saying the same thing, though, that Mkhitaryan is a super football player and will give us a lot during the season.”
Well, clearly he does not think any less of Mkhitaryan but looks like the Portuguese boss is not going to come under pressure just because he has signed new players. Good sign from a manager holding the reins of Manchester United.