Jose Mourinho will have to offload Henrikh Mkhitaryan if he wants to land Mesut Ozil, according to reports.
World Cup winner Ozil is available on a free transfer at the end of the season.
And Mourinho is keen on reuniting with the former Real Madrid midfielder, who has fallen in and out of favour with Arsenal fans since his switch to the Emirates in 2013.
While United do have cash to spend, Ed Woodward is keen to keep the ship on an even keel financially – and the Red Devils’ wages are the joint highest in the Premier League.
Mkhitaryan could be the earner that feels the heat, according to the Mirror, with United open to offloading the Armenian to fund Ozil’s £300,00-a-week wage demands.
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The long-running stand-off with Arsenal over the sum, worth £15.6million to the player each year, has created unease at the Emirates, not least because it combined with Alexis Sanchez’s similar wage demands.
The Chilean superstar can also leave North London on a Bosman next summer and looks destined for either Paris Saint-Germain or Manchester City.
Mkhitaryan, meanwhile, has had a tough time of it under Mourinho, with the Portuguese declaring that his competitors in the United squad are currently ahead in the pecking order.
He has been sidelined since the last international break, having had a dip in form since his strong start to the season, where he had five assists and a goal.
Mourinho said: “I had two defenders that can play in different areas, I have Ashley Young to cover the wing and wing backs position.
“[Ander] Herrera is a midfield player, Zlatan [Ibrahimovic] is a striker, [Marcus] Rashford is a second striker and a winger.
“To have Mkhitaryan means I don’t have one of them and I believe the others deserve.”