Manchester United only need a point against Zorya Luhansk to qualify for the last 32 of the Europa League but Henrikh Mkhitaryan insists the Reds will be playing to win in Ukraine on Thursday night.
Mkhitaryan could be involved for the Reds at Odessa’s Chornomorets Stadium, the venue where he scored a hat-trick while playing for Shakhtar Donetsk in August 2012.
And the Armenian feels that approaching the final Group A clash with the right mindset could have a positive knock-on effect for the subsequent Premier League game against Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.
“We are not going to play for a draw,” he told MUTV. “It would be good to win before the game against Tottenham – good for our mentality, good for the atmosphere in the dressing room. We will try to win and be ready for the next game as well.
“But it’s not going to be easy. Our opponent defends very well and plays with counter-attacks. The quality of the pitch might also have a role. We have to be ready for all kinds of situations and fight until the end.”
Mkhitaryan’s encouraging recent form, which yielded two Man of the Match awards at Old Trafford inside a week, has been warmly welcomed by United’s fans.
“I’m thankful to the United supporters,” the 27-year-old added. “I have felt their support and I can only pay them back by playing good, scoring goals and assisting.”