So the blockbuster transfer of the current window is in the books, with Alexis Sanchez now in Manchester United uniform, whilst Henrikh Mkhitaryan is now a Gunner. Fans of both clubs will feel they have the better of the deal – but from an FPL perspective, we feel that it is Mkhitaryan who you should be looking to purchase and include in your team, over the Chilean superstar at Old Trafford – here are our three main reasons why :
VALUE FOR MONEY
Sanchez is valued at £11.7m – Mkhitaryan over £4m less (£7.6m). Okay, Sanchez has 97 current FPL points to the Armenian’s 57 – but has spent considerably more time on the pitch – 1501 minutes to 920. Pro-rata that out and he is about on pace with Sanchez. Plus, lets not forget that over the early part of United’s season, Mkhitaryan was THE FPL form player, notching up 5 assists in his first three games, accounting for a part in half of United’s goals. You have to believe that Mkhitaryan will have a point to prove and for the money, we think he can contribute hugely to the Arsenal cause.
Both teams have a mixed bag of games upcoming, but we feel, on balance, Arsenal’s schedule is kinder than United’s, and this again gives more opportunity for a positive FPL production for Mkhitaryan than Sanchez. Arsenal open up with a trip to Swansea whilst United face Spurs (A) – and then the Gooners have Everton (H), Spurs (A), Man City (H), Brighton (A) and then Watford (H). United have Huddersfield (H), Newcastle (A), Chelsea (H), Palace (A), Liverpool (H). If Wenger can get Mkhitaryan chock full of confidence, he could well outscore Sanchez over these games and beyond, and give your team a real boost.
There is little doubt that both players will be utilised in the upcoming European games that United and Arsenal have, but Sanchez’s involvement in the duo of games against a potent Sevilla side for the Red Devils will be much more intense than Mkhitaryan’s for Arsenal against the Swedish ‘giants’ of Ostersunds. Indeed, given Mourinho’s penchant for resting players to factor in his Champions League obligations, it would be no surprise to see Sanchez rested up for games against ‘lesser’ Premier League opponents that surround CL fixtures. This could affect his FPL production for United – meaning, again, Mkhitaryan should become a preferred option simply because he will get more pitch time than his Chilean counterpart.
Overall, picking Sanchez or Mkhitaryan could/should well be a case of heads I win, tails you lose, as both should benefit from the transfer and produce valuable FPL points. But if you only have space for one, we feel the Armenian should be given the nod, especially for the balance of this season, if not next.