Are Chelsea looking at this Armenian star to replace Frank Lampard?

Henrikh Mkhitaryan has announced his intention to leave Shakhtar Donetsk this summer, with both Chelsea and Manchester City reportedly keen on singing the 24 year old.

In the past year, Chelsea have a poor record of following through on their interest in star players in the Ukrainian league, having watch both Taison and Willian move elsewhere. This summer will see another of Shakhtar's best players on the market, and the Blues could face stern competition from Premier League rivals Manchester City should they make a move for Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

The Armenian has an excellent record for Shakhtar, having scored twenty goals already this season from an attacking midfield position. Mkhitaryan is comfortable on the ball, possesses an excellent long shot, and has the knack of arriving in the box perfectly timed to finish off his sides attacking moves.

In this regard, he has been compared to Frank Lampard this season by Pat Nevin, who singled out Mkhitaryan as a man Chelsea must keep tabs on if they were to beat Shakhtar in their Champions League group. With Chelsea likely to need a replacement for Lampard come the summer, they could turn to Mkhitaryan.

However if Manchester City are also involved in the bidding, the price for the Armenian's services could rise steeply, and as Anzhi demonstrated with their successful capture of Willian, there are other sides ready to match and even supersede the transfer fees Chelsea and Manchester City can offer.

Add in the prospect of Financial Fair Play regulations being on the horizon, and the English sides might feel that Mkhitaryan might end up being too risky a purchase for the large amounts that will be involved.

Shakhtar are a rich club themselves, and will no incentive to sell unless the offer is a ridiculous one. Whilst all the talk might be about the huge fees Edinson Cavani and Radamel Falcao might command, a 24-year-old Armenian might end up being one of the biggest transfers of the summer.

image: © jbl767

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