Manchester United’s Armenian midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan receives medical attention after picking up an injury during the English Premier League football match between Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur at Old Trafford in Manchester, north west England, on December 11, 2016.
Oli SCARFF / AFP
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho played down the severity of an injury sustained by match-winner Henrikh Mkhitaryan during his side’s 1-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.
Mkhitaryan, 27, settled the game with his first Premier League goal, running onto Ander Herrera’s pass in the 29th minute and powering a shot past goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.
But he left the field strapped to a stretcher with six minutes remaining after his left ankle appeared to roll as he was caught by visiting left-back Danny Rose.
“We don’t think it’s a serious injury,” Mourinho said. “We don’t think maybe Henrikh can play for a week. I was afraid it was serious, but it looks like it’s not.
“Maximum a couple of weeks. It doesn’t look like something that is very dangerous or difficult.
“He brings everything I want an attacker to play. Maybe one week out and it is better to be fresh for Boxing Day.”
Mkhitaryan has scored two goals in two games, having opened his United account against Zorya Luhansk in the Europa League, and looked to be on his way to becoming a guaranteed starter.
“I am happy with that from Henrikh,” Mourinho added.
“Not just the way he’s creating but his defensive participation in the team. He crossed the line to be a better player. He crossed the line mentally, that others have to cross.
“I want more from some of my attacking players. The two moments of recovering the ball are crucial moments. Mkhitaryan was superb on that.”
United’s win ended a run of four successive league draws at Old Trafford and took them to within six points of the Champions League places.