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From the Pitch

Mourinho says Mkhitaryan will come good

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho says he has no doubt Henrikh Mkhitaryan will be a good player for the club once he’s adjusted to the Premier League.

Mkhitaryan has been spending a lot of time on the sidelines, and was omitted from the final 18-man squad against Manchester City in the EFL Cup midweek. Mourinho confirmed that the Armenian international is healthy and wasn’t left out of the squad because of injury.

“He is not injured,” Mourinho said. “Sometimes I confuse the word ‘fit’ in the English language. Sometimes you can say that it is ‘not injured’, but you could also say that it is ‘in great condition and ready to compete’.

“That is different for me as we use different words in Portuguese for the different situations. Mkhitaryan is not injured, he is training with the team 100 percent.”

The Portuguese manager was asked if it can take certain players a longer time to adjust to life in England and adapt to the Premier League.

“Some players find it very easy whereas others need more time,” Mourinho said. “They need time to feel the intensity, the aggression, the game without the ball and the competitiveness.

“The realities are often different, particularly in terms of the competitiveness. It doesn’t matter who you are against, you have to play at the highest level, otherwise you will not be able to do it.

“Mhiki needs time to become the top player he knows he can be. We believe him and, sooner or later, there will be no problem.”

United takes on newcomers Burnley at Old Trafford on Saturday.

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