Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has admitted that Henrikh Mkhitaryan is very close to adapting the intesity of the football in England.
The Armenian delivered his best performance yet in an United shirt in the 4-1 win over West Ham in the quarter-finals of the EFL Cup on Wednesday night, registering two assists.
Mkhitaryan has struggled to perform for United since joining from Borussia Dortmund for £26 million in the summer.
He suffered a thigh injury which kept him out for a month at the start of the season and has struggled to break his way into the team since, but has started to show signs of adapting.
Mourinho initially admitted that the playmaker would need time to get accustom to the intensity of Premier League, but it appears he is finally doing so.
Consecutive Man of the Match performances from Mkhitaryan
Mkhitaryan found it hard to get a place in the matchday squad after making a return from injury. He finally got minutes on the pitch against Fenerbahce last month after being subbed at half-time in the derby defeat to Manchester City in September.
Mourinho has demanded patience and hard work from the playmaker to get his place back in the team and he delivered a second Man of the Match performance in a space of seven days in mid-week.
He was impressive in the comfortable win against Feyenoord in the Europa LEague last Thursday, in addition to his efforts against the Hammers.
Mourinho praised Mkhitaryan after the game for his “good performance against a Premier League team, with Premier League qualities and Premier League characteristics.”
Mkhitaryan has a chance to cement his place in starting eleven
Mourinho insisted that the 27-year-old is on the right track to completing his adaption to English top-flight football.
The attacking midfielder enjoyed a brilliant season with Dortmund last term as he was voted Player’s Player of the Year in the Bundesliga for racking up well beyond double figures in goals and assists.
The Portuguese manager insisted: “We are really happy because we know the reason why we bought him and we were waiting for his adaptation and it looks like it's coming.”
Mkhitaryan has brought much-needed urgency and incision in the final third for United and Mourinho will be hoping that he remains consistent in Premier League.
Mkhitaryan has a good chance of featuring against Everton this weekend as United travel to Goodison Park on Sunday.