This article is part of Football FanCast’s Pundit View series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent quotes from journalists, pundits, players and managers…
Henrikh Mkhitaryan has opened up about playing under Unai Emery at Arsenal, during an interview with FourFourTwo.
The Armenia international is spending the season on loan at AS Roma, which he indicated is due to the lack of game time he was getting at the Emirates Stadium following a season in which he started 19 Premier League games, coming on as a substitute in a further 6.
This campaign he got off to a good start with Roma, getting a goal and assist in 4 Serie A matches, but has been out since then with a tear in the abductor muscle.
Speaking of his time under Emery, Mkhitaryan told FourFourTwo: “I was starting as a winger, but had to build play with the defensive midfielder, it’s why I couldn’t contribute as many goals or assists.
“I like to play more freely and move wherever there’s space, but you have to do the job that the manager asks.”
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Following these comments, it is difficult to envisage the 30-year-old representing Arsenal again while Emery is manager of the club.
Considering all of the pressure the manager has been under in recent weeks, with many fans wanting him out of Arsenal, the Spaniard likely won’t take too kindly to a player on his club’s books discrediting him and his tactics so openly.
With this in mind, speaking about the topic in such a frank way is possibly ill-advised from Mkhitaryan due to the fact that he is still technically an Arsenal player.
Even if Emery does leave, this probably won’t help his cause with future bosses, as they may be questioning whether they want to manage the type of player who would come out with comments that could be deemed unprofessional from a current employee.