Money was not the factor in deciding to leave Borussia Dortmund for Manchester United, according to Henrikh Mkhitaryan.
It has been a bizarre few months for the Armenian international after he arrived at Old Trafford in July in a deal rumoured to be worth around £26m.
Most people thought that the attacking midfielder, who can also play on the wing, would go straight into Jose Mourinho’s team after scoring 11 goals in the Bundesliga and creating 15 others for Dortmund last season.
That has been far from the case, though, as the 27-year-old has started just one game this season, which was United’s 2-1 defeat to Manchester City at Old Trafford on September 10.
Mourinho has consistently told the media that Mkhitaryan, who recently struggled with a thigh injury, is not yet at the correct fitness level to cope with the demands of English football.
The situation surrounding the summer signing has raised a few eyebrows, particularly after he played a pivotal role in helping Armenia come from 2-0 down to beat Montenegro 3-2 in Friday’s World Cup qualifier.
Mkhitaryan has been asked about his switch to United, and the attacker has insisted that he is unwilling to just on the sidelines and pick up a paycheque.
“I was always taught by my father to challenge myself and to continue to evolve in my career and I saw the move to Manchester United as an opportunity to grow as a player and as a person,” The Mirror quotes Mkhitaryan as saying.
“It was definitely not the salary that made me join Manchester United, I went for football reasons – for the history of the club, the league, the fans and the coach because he is one of the best in the world.”