By Dave Marshal
Manchester United romped to a 4-0 victory over Feyenoord in the Europa League on Thursday to keep alive their hopes of progression to the next round. Goals from Wayne Rooney, Juan Mata, Jesse Lingard as well as an own goal from a Feyenoord player ensured it was an entertaining display from Mourinho’s men, who have only impressed in spurts all season. One player who particularly impressed was 27 year old Armenia international, Henrikh Mkhitaryan. He started on the left, but swapped into the middle and the right, as he combined well with the likes of Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata. He didn’t have a goal or an assist, but was a menace to the Dutch side for the 82 minutes he played on the pitch.
According to the Express, Mourinho said he substituted the Armenia captain as he was beginning to lose steam, which is understandable as he has not been match sharp this season. Speaking to reporters after the game, he said, “He’s always improving, improving, improving, improving until the moment he was really tired and I felt it was the right moment to take him off and to let him come off with a very good performance.” he added.
Mkhitaryan joined Manchester United for £26m in the summer from Borussia Dortmund, after a spectacular season at Signal Iduna Park last term, and his signing was much anticipated by Old Trafford faithfuls, who were waiting anxiously to see him strut his stuff on the terraces at the Theatre of Dreams. Mkhitaryan was substituted with 8 minutes of the 90 still to play, and received a standing ovation from the fans for his fantastic performance. Mkhitaryan has struggled for game time all season, as his only start for the club came in the 2-1 derby loss to Manchester City back in September, a game in which he was anonymous, and was eventually hauled off at half time.
United host West Ham in the Premier League on Sunday, a game which is sure to give Jose some selection dilemmas, as Mkhitaryan played extremely well against Van Bronckhorst’s men.