Borussia Dortmund midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan has said the club’s style of football made him opt for the Bundesliga over the Premier League in the summer.
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Mkhitaryan, 24, became Dortmund’s record signing in July when arrived at the Westfalenstadion from Shakhtar Donetsk for a reported fee of twenty-seven-and-a-half million euros.
Following an ankle injury sustained in preseason, the Armenia international needed some time to settle at the club.
During the summer transfer window, the three-time Armenian Footballer of the Year had been linked with a move to the Premier League, with a switch to Liverpool reportedly coming close to being completed.
But speaking to Die Welt, Mkhitaryan has said that playing time rather than the money was the most important factor in his decision to move to Germany.
“Money is not that important in football,” he said. “Certainly it is also about your wages. But that doesn’t come first for me. There is only room for football.
“I live football, I think football, I feel football. And when I perform well, the money follows anyhow. I came to Dortmund to play and not to sit on the bench, like it might have been the case in England.”
Mkhitaryan added that Dortmund had caught his eye ever since Shakhtar played against the Bundesliga side in last season’s Champions League.
“I had many options. But I opted for Dortmund because I like the way football is played here,” he said. “I saw all the BVB games on TV after we had played them with Shakhtar in the Champions League.
“BVB have not only played fantastic football, but also a style of football that suits me. I thought: This is a team I can grow in, where I can further myself.”
Mkhitaryan also praised Dortmund coach Juergen Klopp, who last week signed a new contract at the club.
“That’s great news, because it is a real pleasure to work with him. I also enjoy just talking to him. Juergen Klopp is a great coach and a great person,” he said.
Dortmund currently sit second in the Bundesliga, just one point behind leaders Bayern Munich, who won the title last season by a record 25-point margin.
“It would be nice if we could manage to close the gap to Bayern a bit. I think we can do that,” he said.
“But of course, I also want to win titles with Dortmund. I can only say, we will give it our all to win every game. And then we’ll take a look where that leaves us.”