We dislike international breaks. And it’s incidents like these that explain why. Manchester United’s recent arrival, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, has been withdrawn in the first half of Armenia’s encounter with the Czech Republic tonight. Mkhitaryan — Armenia’s captain and star player — collided heavily with Czech defender Marek Suchý, according to journalist Artur Petrosyan, though he claims it may only be a precautionary measure:
It could be a precaution from Mkhitaryan to ask to be replaced. Something with ribs in the worst scenario, but probably nothing serious.— Artur Petrosyan (@arturpetrosyan) August 31, 2016
Though Mkhitaryan is yet to make a league start for United this season, with Juan Mata still surprisingly preferred out on the right, it's widely anticipated that he'll establish himself in José Mourinho's starting lineup in the near future. Mata has so far failed to really impress, and Mkhitaryan — who won last season’s individual prize in the Bundesliga — is surely knocking on the door.
Let’s hope that his substitution really was only a precaution, and that he’s able to get back to regular training at the end of the international break.