(Reuters) - Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho said the club are still trying to sign Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal but added that the deal, which British media report could involve Henrikh Mkhitaryan moving in the other direction, was not done at all.
As talks continue, the Armenian midfielder has been left out of United’s squad for Saturday’s Premier League clash with Burnley but Mourinho said at a news conference on Friday that he was unclear as to how close the two clubs were to closing the transfers.
“I think clearly everybody knows that we are there, and especially when the Arsenal manager speaks so clearly like he did there is no point in trying to hide or deny,” Mourinho said in reference to Arsene Wenger’s admission on Thursday that Sanchez might move to United within 48 hours.
“But it is not done at all, so in this moment Mkhitaryan our player, Sanchez an Arsenal player and with a match tomorrow I want to switch off and focus on the most important thing, which is the match.”
Sanchez was pictured training with Arsenal on Friday and could feature in the club’s game at home to Crystal Palace on Saturday.
Mourinho said he was not involved in the negotiations and, like everyone else, was waiting to be updated on their progress.
“Sometimes people think transfers involve a lot the managers in the negotiations, I think it depends on the profile of the club, the way we establish our jobs and in my case when it goes to the table of negotiations I like to be out, I am out and I will just calmly be waiting for news, no more than that,” he said.
The Portuguese coach added that he will inform the media on his view on Sanchez if they eventually sign the Chile international.
“I will speak with you if one day we sign him, I can speak with you about him and what he can bring to our team. He’s an Arsenal player, he’s not my player, there’s no point in me speaking about something that may or may not happen.”
Mourinho said that defender Daley Blind has been ruled out of the Burnley game with injury.
Reporting by Neil Robinson; Editing by Christian Radnedge