Henrikh Mkhitaryan is hoping to be given a new start at Manchester United after playing a key role in their 4-0 Europa League win over Feyenoord at Old Trafford.
Mkhitaryan was named in the starting XI for only the second time since his July arrival from Borussia Dortmund and gave a performance that featured six shots and three chances created as United took a huge step towards the knockout stages.
The Armenia international has been out of favour under manager Jose Mourinho but believes his lively showing on Thursday could act as a fresh beginning.
“It was a pleasure to play again and start the game,” Mkhitaryan told BT Sport.
“I try to do my best and it’s a very good result.
“It has been difficult to watch the team from the sidelines but you have to have passion and work hard.
“I hope it is a new start for me.”
Henrikh Mkhitaryan did not show any rustiness despite having played only once for his club since 10 September. He had six shots, made 55 passes (accuracy 85.5%) and won the ball back eight times.
He linked up well with team-mates, and would have got on the end of a through ball from Rooney had the England captain not overhit it, after a slick one-touch passing move between the pair.
One of the game’s outstanding moments came when Mkhitaryan ran from his own half, taking on several Feyenoord defenders, before going down under pressure from Jens Toornstra. The Dutch champions were fortunate the referee did not give a free-kick, which would also have resulted in a red card.
The 27-year-old had six shots, including blocked efforts, and came off, alongside Rooney, to a standing ovation after 82 minutes.