Earlier today, reports surfaced around the web that Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s agent, Mino Raiola, did something rather impolite during transfer talks with the club. What did he do? He flipped a chair. He took a (presumably) wooden seating device and flipped it. There were even reports of the chair gaining flight, which would imply that Raiola actually threw it.
First of all, let’s just be glad it wasn’t a table, or else things really would have gotten messy. Now, I don’t know what the club’s chair-treatment policies are, but I’m going to go ahead and guess that this was not received well by upper management. At the very least, he could have had the common courtesy to bring his own chair to the meeting. I sure as hell hope that he picked it up afterwards, too.
So, what exactly caused Mino to do such a thing? Here’s how I’d like to imagine it played out:
Warning: The following may contain slight traces of journalistic exaggeration
On one side of the table sat Hans-Joachim Watzke, who wore a slick black suit with a yellow tie. He sat calmly, his hands folded onto the table, his back straight and his chin held high.
On the other side sat a towering, certainly not portly man by the name of Mino Raiola. He wore a sleeveless camo t-shirt dotted with various Mötley Crüe and Lynyrd Skynyrd band pins. On his left arm, tattooed in black were the words, "Never Extend." On his face rested a pair of golden aviator sunglasses that covered his stern and determined visage.
Raiola thundered in a booming voice"Henrikh Mkhitaryan..." He paused and looked deep into Watzke’s eyes, judging his depth of character and strength of will.
"Will not be extending his contract." The crowd roared in anger.
Watzke calmly asked, "So you are requesting that Henrikh be sold?"
Raiola answered, "Yes. To Manchester United. He’s decided that being at a stable, non-dysfuntional club is too boring, and would like to play for a club that thinks that hiring Jose Mourinho to coach a team whose best hopes for the future are its young players is a good idea."
Watzke winced. "I suppose he would like to play with Zlatan, too?"
Raiola smiled and replied, "Yes, never having to receive a pass from his striker ever again is one of his key desires."
Watzke sighed. Why does Mkhi want to leave? He pondered to himself. "Our offer still stands, and we believe that without Mkhitaryan we will not be able to compete this year... therefore, we will not be selling him to Manchester United."
Raiola burst from his chair and lunged at Watzke, who held his nerve and didn’t react. "You’re going to regret this, Hans! Lest I remind you of what I did to AC Milan’s office when they refused to sell Mario Balotelli?"
Watzke thought back to the newspaper headlines... "Seven men and one infant injured in agent rampage." He shuddered.
Raiola rubbed the wooden chair upon which he sat. "This is fine wood... mahogany?" He asked. Watzke stayed silent. "It would be a shame if something were to happen to it." Watzke still said nothing, his expression blank.
"Take the deal that United has offered you. You signed all those kids, what do you need Mkhi for?" Raiola pleaded.
Watzke thought back to Lewandowski, how he had let him go without charge to Bayern Münich... to how he had been able to sell Mats Hummels to Bayern before losing him to free agency. Suddenly, he felt very light headed... ￡28 million? That’s a lot of cash...
But then, he thought to all the fans who would be disappointed, to his players who desired to finally win silverware, and to a certain Fear the Wall writer who just dished out $75 for a new Mkhitaryan kit.
"Nein!" He shouted. Raiola jumped back, startled. "We will sell our players when we want to! We’ll see how much Henrikh wants to transfer when Manchester United are playing in the Championship! He signed a contract with us, and he will play out the remainder of that contract until we feel like selling him!" He picked up a microphone that sat arbitrarily on the table, held it up his shoulder, and dropped it.
Raiola frowned, and muttered furiously through his teeth, "You brought this on yourself." He stood up and stepped away from his chair. He glanced at Watzke one last time, who refused to waver. "I HATE MYSELF ON THE INSIDE!!!" He screamed as he hurled the chair into the air. It flipped end over end as it tumbled onto the table between them. Watzke didn’t even flinch.
"Auf Wiedersehen." Raiola muttered, pronouncing it like "off weeder-say-in." He got up and walked away.
As he did, Watzke smirked and said, "That wasn’t even real mahogany."