City's stance has put United in pole position to win the race for Sanchez, who is determined to leave Arsenal this month rather than wait to move as a free agent in the summer.
Manchester City had been regarded as the favourites to sign the 29-year-old forward this month, but senior figures at the Etihad told ESPN FC on Friday that the Premier League leaders would not pursue a move for the Chilean unless Arsenal substantially dropped their £35m asking price for a player with less than six months remaining on his contract.
The 36-year-old former Sweden global suffered a horrific knee injury back in April 2017 in Manchester United's Europa League campaign and despite making an early comeback, he is yet to reach full fitness.More news: Watford's Abdoulaye Doucoure scores equaliser against Southampton with hand
However, despite a disappointing display in the Red Devils' goalless draw against Southampton, Mkhitaryan was handed a start against the Championship side in the FA Cup.
'And I am not the kind of blind manager.
'My approach to players is that every player has a price - doesn't matter who he is, the level, doesn't matter the prestige, the status, every player has a price, ' said the United boss. Blind in the sense that this player is untouchable, this player can never be sold.
United did not buy a single player in the 2016 or 2017 winter transfer windows, and the only player they picked up in the 2015 January market was back-up goalkeeper Victor Valdes.More news: Canadiens' Danault to remain hospitalized after shot to head
"He consulted a Doctor and we made the decision to stop".
But, asked if the Armenian will stay at Old Trafford, he replied: "Every player has a price".
"But Mkhitaryan played the last match in the FA Cup against Derby".
Elsewhere, Ashley Young is still serving his three-match suspension while Eric Bailly is working his way back from an ankle injury so both players are certain to miss the Stoke game. So tomorrow training, then Sunday selected and Monday play'.More news: Norwegians decline President Donald Trump's offer to move to US
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