Henrikh Mkhitaryan has offered some insight into what it takes to win huge games like Manchester United’s North-West derby against Liverpool on Sunday.
The Reds’ Goal of the Month winner believes there are a number of components to coming out on top in such fixtures and is relishing the chance to post an entry into the history books by helping Jose Mourinho’s side achieve a memorable result against the second-placed Merseysiders.
“Everyone is waiting for Sunday’s game,” Mkhitaryan told MUTV. “I missed the first game against Liverpool at Anfield but I know the price of this game. I know the importance of this game. I know very well the history.
“It’s not the first time I’m going to play in such a derby and you have to be ready that day. It doesn’t matter, you have to play for the team and have to play for the crowd to do your best to win that game because it’s going to be [recorded] in the history. Of course, besides that, we need the three points which is very important for the next few months.
“There are a lot of components,” he replied, when asked if the game will be emotionally, as well as physically, draining. “Not only the pressure, not only the way people are working for that game. It’s the teamwork, the last decisive pass, the last shot, the runs. It is everything.
“You cannot say you have to improve [just] this component so we can win. No, you have to improve other components. You have to win every battle, every small metre counts and you have to win your duels. Then you will see you will win the game.”
Jurgen Klopp coached Mkhitaryan at his former club Borussia Dortmund so he is well aware of the strengths of the Liverpool manager.
“They’ve improved a lot from last year with Jurgen Klopp,” he said. “I know him very well. He’s one of the greatest coaches and he can bring the team to a new level. His team are playing very interesting football and I think it’s going to be a nice game.
“I think he’s doing very well, he gives confidence to the players and takes the best out of the players. That’s what he does very well.”