Shakhtar boss resorts to dirty tactics to keep Mkhitaryan

Heinrich Mkhitaryan

Shakhtar Donetsk boss Mircea Lucescu has effectively started slagging off Liverpool to get Henrikh Mkhitaryan to stay at the club.

Mkhitaryan has been linked with Liverpool for several weeks and some sort of agreement seems to have finally been reached which will give the Anfield club a chance to sign the Armenian 24-year-old on a long term deal.

His value to Shakhtar is very high but that doesn’t excuse the dirty tactics manager Mircea Lucescu is effectively resorting to in order to try and hang onto one of his best players.

“I think he is making a big mistake - I can understand the urge to leave if he has a chance to go to a club that surpasses Shakhtar, like Barcelona or Real Madrid - not clubs like Liverpool,” said Lucescu.

Liverpool may not have the current status in the European game enjoyed by the two huge Spanish teams but to suggest they are an inferior club is very naïve and blatantly disrespectful.

Liverpool are one of the best supported teams in England and it’s a tribute to the success throughout their history that teams like Manchester United and Everton go all out to beat them on a regular basis.

Liverpool’s history means they will always have that sort of special status in English and European football because they created an era of success that very few clubs will only ever dream of.

It’s also naïve to suggest that Liverpool can’t surpass Shakhtar because of the good work Brendan Rodgers has already done at the club and what he’s trying to achieve at Anfield.

Liverpool were off the pace in terms of the top four last season but Rodgers is trying to create a sustainable model, which will keep creating superb teams generation after generation.

Add to that the fact that Liverpool played some superb passing football last season and if everything clicks, they could very well qualify for the Champions League with after a good battle for the top four next year.

“We are a strong club with 50,000 passionate supporters every week, and every year we are fighting for the league, the cups and the Champions League,” added Lucescu.

Everyone always talks about the special atmosphere which is created at Anfield every time a big Premier League or European match comes around.

Once the stadium redevelopment has been completed, Mkhitaryan could well be enjoying the best years of his career in front of a sold out crowd of 60,000 fans on a weekly basis.

It’s also needless to point out that the standard of football in the Ukrainian league is lower than the standard of the Premier League game, creating another flawed comparison from the Shakhtar boss.

Football is unfortunately in an era where some managers will do anything and say anything to try and keep a player but that doesn’t mean there isn’t any more room for professionalism.

How do you think Mkhitaryan will get on at Liverpool? Can they complete the deal?

image: © Валерий Дудуш

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