By Jack Malone

Manchester United midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan will not be returning to Borussia Dortmund should his Premier League move fail to work out, according to the German club’s CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke.

The Armenian has started just one league match since his £26 million move in the summer, but it seems his former employers will not be offering him an escape route from Old Trafford.

When asked if there was any chance of a return for Mkhitaryan, Watzke’s response was witheringly emphatic.

“No. Any intelligent player should consider in advance what kind of environment they are moving to,” he told Kicker.

“When you are playing in surroundings where things are working for you, like in Dortmund, then it is quite strange to give that away again once things have finally started to work out for you after a long time settling in.”

Watzke then dug the knife in further by suggesting that the 27-year-old was not in the same class as other players that the club had lost over the summer.

“We need to cope with losing two world-class players in Hummels and Gundogan and also Mkhitaryan.”

The playmaker scored 23 goals and provided a further 32 assists for Dortmund last season in all competitions, but has made an underwhelming start to life in England.

He has played just 104 minutes of football this campaign and whilst injuries have been a factor, there are question marks over whether Jose Mourinho sees him as a regular starter.

However, it is still early in his career at the Theatre of Dreams and fans will be hoping that with a run of games under his belt, Mkhitaryan can start to reproduce the form that made him one of Europe’s hottest properties in the transfer window.

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