Shakhtar’s top scorer of the current season gave an extensive interview to Vesti newspaper. Shakhtar’s official website present excerpts from Armenian midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s interview.
On the performance record in the league
– Yeah, I’m not a pronounced forward, but our team play attacking football, and we have to spend a lot of time in the opponents’ box. So I, as a second striker, could score so many goals. But, of course, credit for this goes to the whole team and my teammates.
On the midfielders’ high performance
– It’s often the result of strikers’ work who open up, create open spaces for their teammates. The same is true of Shakhtar – for me a lot of spaces were cleared by Seleznyov, Devic and Adriano.
About the “coolest” goal scored
– I think that’s my 23rd goal I scored this season. For me, it’s been the most important and the hardest goal. I was looking forward to scoring it, and it gave me more confidence and peace of mind. Now it’s all done, the record’s been broken, so I can continue to work without any stress.
On the record by Vitaliy Starukhin
– This has been the club achievement, I do not think it’s important to improve it. Of course, it will be pleasant if this happens, but still the Ukrainian record was more important. It had to be broken by a player of Shakhtar.
On playing selfishly
– It depends on the situation. If you can score yourself, you must act independently then. But if you see that your teammate has a better position, you must pass the ball to him. If you took the game over unreasonably – Mister won’t be happy, telling you everything he thinks after the game. Generally, you can and must be selfish in training. In the game, it is necessary to be an altruist, thinking about the team. It seems to me that there are no selfish people at Shakhtar.
About internship at Sao Paulo
– Before going to Brazil, I was learning the language for two months in Armenia. However, learning is one thing, but real life is quite another. It was there, on the spot, that I attended school, and began to actively communicate with the teammates. Overall, I mastered the language fast – everyone was shocked by how quickly it is possible to learn to speak Portuguese so well in next to no time.
On the Ukrainian league
– Of course, it’s interesting to play here, which is increasingly difficult from year to year. In recent years, the teams have been much stronger, with a much better player selection. What I don’t like about it? Probably every player does not like the fact that as early as in late November the pitches get very bad. The same is true for March. Playing football is simply impossible. I think this is the major flaw of Ukrainian football. It is necessary to improve the quality of pitches. Otherwise, the Ukrainian league is fine with me.
About how Shakhtar could have played against Borussia if Ukraine had had good fields
– Then, perhaps, a break in the league season would have been shorter. Still, three months without official games is too much. No friendlies can fully prepare you for playing such opponents as Borussia. The necessary pressure and the Champions League atmosphere are missing. We lost a lot in that period of time. Had the break been shorter or nonexistent, we would have played much better against Borussia. I consider the scoreline to be just an irregularity. It’s true that there have been reasons for such a major defeat. But if we play ten games against them now, then we won’t lose in at least nine of them. Let alone the score of 0-3.
About similarity between his style of play and that of world stars
– I can’t see myself from outside and can’t assess myself. It is better to ask about this the experts who can really compare the game of different players.
On his temperament
– I am both hot-tempered and cold, and warm. In different ways. It happens that I lose my temper and become hotheaded. Sometimes, on the contrary – I am very calm and reasonable.
On the reason for staying at Kirsha training centre
– The club certainly offered me an apartment, a house, but I chose to live here. So I wanted to quickly blend in with the team to focus on training, to understand what Shakhtar is. Far not everyone can become a part of this team. Life at the base made my task easier to fulfill. Here it was possible to work more effectively, to rest and recover better. Based on this, I chose the base. Not a single house or an apartment can offer you such beauty, such amenities. Besides, I do not have a girl, my mother and sister do not come so often …
On the chances of the girls from Donetsk to make Mkhitaryan’s acquaintance
– Everything depends on them.
About the Dream Team
– At different age, I was rooting for different teams. Growing up, I often changed my preferences. Before, I did not like Bayern Munich – now I really like them. Same story with Barcelona. As you grow older, your tastes change. And there are no such teams, whose only name would send me into raptures.
On transfer rumours and possible move to another club
– To be honest, I do not pay any attention to it at all. Now I’m Shakhtar player now, and my thoughts are with this club. I think only about how to help the team win in the remaining matches of the season. What is written about me is the business of those who write. If there are some real offers – let then address the club, and let the club decide on it.