Wayne Rooney and Henrikh Mkhitaryan are both expected to be named in the Manchester United team for the visit of Zorya Luhansk in the Europa League on Thursday night. The duo have started together on just one previous occasion, in the 2-1 home defeat against Manchester City, and they now appear to be direct rivals for the Red Devils’ no. 10 role.
WAYNE ROONEY VS HENRIKH MKHITARYAN
Neither player has covered themselves in glory during the early stages of the current season, though both have plenty to offer. Although Rooney has been written off in many quarters, his return of 37 goals and 21 assists over the course of the previous three Premier League campaigns remains an impressive one:
|30Y 11M||AGE||27Y 8M|
|5FT 10IN||HEIGHT||5FT 10IN|
|13ST 0LB||WEIGHT||11ST 0LB|
|PL | MNU |||| BVB | BL|
|08/13 - 06/16||08/13 - 06/16|
For his part, Mkhitaryan managed 23 goals and 29 assists for Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga during the same period. Juan Mata is the current incumbent of the no. 10 role at Old Trafford, but his tally of 23 goals and 16 assists in the top-flight between August 2013 and May 2016 ranks the Spaniard last amongst this trio in terms of direct goal contribution.
As you would expect of a club of the size and stature of Manchester United, the Red Devils have plenty of good options in this key position. It may be that we don’t see the best of Mkhitaryan until January, but his numbers, his age and the trust of Jose Mourinho surely make him the best choice.
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