Who is Manchester United’s best no. 10?

By Mark Peters IN General - 20:10 Sep 28th 2016

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:

Wayne
Rooney
versusHenrikh
Mkhitaryan
FWDPOSITIONMID
30Y 11MAGE27Y 8M
5FT 10INHEIGHT5FT 10IN
13ST 0LBWEIGHT11ST 0LB
 
PL | MNU | | BVB | BL
08/13 - 06/1608/13 - 06/16
87
STARTS
78
7765
MINS
PLAYED
6951
37
GOALS
23
21
ASSISTS
29
10
OPENING
GOALS
4
10
WINNING
GOALS
8
22
HOME
GOALS
11
15
AWAY
GOALS
12
4
HEADED
GOALS
3
L
3
R
28
GOALS
R/L FOOT
L
9
R
11
210
MINS
PER GOAL
302
10
TOTAL
1

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.

VERDICT

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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