Henrikh Mkhitaryan would head to Arsenal as a makewight for Alexis Sanchez in a proposed transfer.
Manchester United play-maker Henrikh Mkhitaryan will have the final say in whether Alexis Sanchez joins the club from Arsenal as the proposed exchange deal hinges entirely on whether the Armenian international is willing to go the opposite way and sign with the Gunners.
That is according to agent Mino Raiola, who represents Mkhitaryan.
With Manchester City pulling out of the race to sign Sanchez, United are rumored to have agreed personal terms with the Chilean. But the deal still relies on Arsenal finding a suitable replacement before sanctioning the final sale.
Typically, Raiola wants the world to know that his client is the most important part of this complicated saga, telling The Times, "Manchester United is not going to sign Sanchez unless Mkhi agrees to join Arsenal."
He also wants to make it known that his client is not simply a makeweight, rather claiming that Mkhitaryan is the key part of this increasingly complicated saga.
"Sanchez is part of the Mkhi deal, not the other way around," Raiola said. "Mkhi is going to do what is best for him. He has two-and-a-half years left on his contract, so it's his decision."
Having lasted just 45 minutes of United's FA Cup third round win against Derby County, Mkhitaryan was once more omitted from the matchday squad on Monday night as his team-mates comfortably beat relegation threatened Stoke on a freezing night at Old Trafford.
Speaking about the player after the game, Mourinho admitted it was 'possible' he could leave.
"Is he going to be involved in a deal and leave us? It's possible but it's also possible that he stays. We have to protect him and to protect the team a little bit, so let's make sure that he stays with us or that he leaves us," the United boss said.