Ex-Borussia Dortmund footballer Henrikh Mkhitaryan is headed to Premier League side Arsenal in a swap deal with Manchester United. Meanwhile, former Bundesliga star Kevin De Bruyne inked a new deal with Manchester City.
Former Borussia Dortmund midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan is to move to English Premier League side Arsenal in a swap deal with Manchester United, where the Armenia captain has struggled to secure a first-team place.
The 29-year-old will join a pool of other former Bundesliga soccer players at the London club, including Mesut Özil, Per Mertesacker, Granit Xhaka and Shkodran Mustafi. Rumors also abound that current Borussia Dortmund striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is on the way to Arsene Wenger's underperforming side.
"I'm very happy that we could finish this deal and I'm very happy to be here," Mkhitaryan told Arsenal's website. "It's a dream come true because I've always dreamed of playing for Arsenal. Now that I'm here, I'll do my best for this club to create history."
Arsenal welcomed the player to the club with a quote from Xhaka, who played for Borussia Mönchengladbach against Mkhitaryan during his time in the Bundesliga.
"It was tough to play against him... to be honest, I'd rather play alongside him!" Xhaka was quoted as saying.
Swaps, extensions for Manchester teams
Heading in the other direction to Manchester United, in what is believed to have been a straight swap, is former Barcelona star Alexis Sanchez. The Chilean forward, whose contract was set to expire at the end of this season, was said to have been unhappy at Arsenal. He'll now be handed the Red Devils' famous number 7 jersey.
Meanwhile, former Gladbach player Kevin De Bruyne extended his contract with Premier League leaders Manchester City — who had also been linked with Sanchez in recent weeks.
De Bruyne has set the Premier League alight this season, with his six goals and 10 assists instrumental in helping coach Pep Guardiola's side establish a 12-point lead at the top of the table.
"Not only are we winning — we are playing great football. It's a pleasure to be a part of and I'm really excited about what we can achieve in the coming years," De Bruyne told the club's website on signing the five-year extension.
The 26-year-old De Bruyne, who joined City from Wolfsburg in 2015, initially signed with the Manchester club until 2020.
rc/se (dpa, AFP, Reuters)