Henrikh Mkhitaryan arrived at Manchester United with one of the most dazzling reputations in German football. The Armenian midfielder enjoyed a stellar few seasons with Dortmund before making the leap to the Premier League. He joined a team in flux, took a little time to settle himself, but came up with some hugely impressive performances, particularly toward the end of the campaign. Sadio Mané arrived at Liverpool from Southampton already very familiar to Premier League defences. A dazzling, speedy winger, the Senegalese player quickly made himself indispensable to Jurgen Klopp and was sorely missed when he left for the African Cup of Nations last season. So the question remains: Mkhitaryan V Sadio Mané, Who’s better?
Mkhitaryan V Sadio Mané: Attack
Mkhitaryan played 24 league games for Manchester United and scored 4 goals, making 0.17 goals per match. It isn’t a fantastic return for a player of his undoubted ability. He took 33 shots, 16 of which were on target, making for a shooting accuracy of 48%. He hit the woodwork once and missed 2 clear chances.
In the Premier League, Sadio Mané played 27 games in the 2016/17 season. In this time he’s scored 13 goals. 0.48 goals per game. Like Mkhitaryan, none were from penalties or free kicks. He took 57 shots, 24 of which were on target. His shooting accuracy then is 42%, actually less than Mkhitaryan, despite his goal tally. You’d wonder why the United man doesn’t take more shots! Mane hit the woodwork 2 times and missed no less than 3 big chances.
So more goals from Sadio Mané, but slightly more accuracy from Mkhitaryan.
Mkhitaryan V Sadio Mané: General Play
Sadio Mané picked up 5 assists in his 27 games. He made 1,020 passes, making 37.78 per match. He created 4 clear cut chances. Mkhitaryan made 1 assist, 775 passes, making 32.29 passes per match on average. he created 6 clear cut chances, though. So, possibly his assist count being behind is more down to the failings of the forwards on his team.
Mkhitaryan made 48 crosses with an accuracy of 19%. He played 11 through balls and fired on 31 accurate long balls. Sadio Mané made 41 crosses with a 17% accuracy. By comparison, he only played 3 through balls and 23 accurate long balls.
Mkhitaryan V Sadio Mané: Defence
Both Mourinho and Klopp favour hard working players, so both these attacking midfielders have had to put in the time tracking back. But how do they compare?
Sadio Mané made 23 tackles with a success rate of 70%. He blocked 19 shots and completed 8 interceptions. Mkhitaryan also made 23 tackles with a success rate of exactly the same, 70%. He only blocked 7 shots, but he did complete 22 interceptions. The Manchester United man made 12 clearances, 4 with his head. 99 recoveries too. He won 88 duels and 29 successful 50 / 50 balls. Mane, by comparison, only made 10 clearances, 5 with his head. He completed an impressive 150 recoveries and won a staggering 188 duels and 68 50 / 50 balls.
The Liverpool winger won 42 aerial battles, though, and made no errors leading to a goal. Mkhitaryan only won 10, but he also made no crucial errors.
It’s pretty tight. Both players have strong attacking abilities but both work hard for their teams. Mkhitaryan v Sadio Mané: Who’s better?