Zorya Luhansk visit Old Trafford as virtual unknowns to Manchester United fans on Thursday, yet Henrikh Mkhitaryan knows all about the Europa League foes from his time in Ukraine, according to Manchester United’s official website.
The summer signing played for Shakhtar Donetsk across three seasons from 2010, before moving to Bundesliga club Borussia Dortmund to continue his personal ascension through the European leagues.
Mkhitaryan did not feature in two matches against Zorya during his debut season with Shakhtar, but his first appearance against them in 2011/12 was a great success, scoring twice in a thumping 5-1 away win at Avanyard Stadium that contributed to his team-mates winning the title that campaign.
The 2012/13 season was also particularly fruitful for Mkhitaryan in both home and away matches against Zorya as he netted in consecutive 3-0 wins. Those two finishes helped him to break the record for the most goals scored by a single player in a Ukrainian Premier League season (25).
In total, Mkhitaryan has scored four goals in three matches against Thursday’s Europa League opponents and the Armenian will undoubtedly hope to improve his impressive tally at Old Trafford, if fit and selected.
Henrikh has not featured for the Reds since the Manchester derby on 10 September, but Jose Mourinho suggested he is close to being available and may update that situation during his pre-match media conference on Wednesday at 13:30 BST, which you can follow live on ManUtd.com.
MKHITARYAN’S RECORD V ZORYA LUHANSK
Zorya Luhansk 1 Shakhtar Donetsk 5 | 16 April 2012 | Two goals
Zorya Luhansk 0 Shakhtar Donetsk 3 | 15 September 2012 | One goal
Shakhtar Donetsk 3 Zorya Luhansk 0 | 13 April 2013 | One goal