It looks as thought Alexis Sanches has had enough and wants to leave Arsenal.
The twenty-eight year old was placed on the bench for the start of his sides latest defeat at the hands of Liverpool and the Gunners are now in a battle to retain their place in the Premier League’s top four.
Reports suggest that the Chilean international has fallen out with his teammates. Other reports also suggest that he has now told Arsene Wenger that he wants to leave in the summer and he won’t be signing a new deal with the London club.
Wenger came out today in his press conference and denied any row with the player but the Gunners gaffer also warned his forward that the club will decided if and when he can leave:
‘Alexis Sanchez has 15 months on his contract so the decision will depend completely on Arsenal football club,’
While I admire Arsene’s stance, I do get the feeling it’s all a bit of a show for the cameras.
Arsenal have shown us in the past that they’d rather sell talent than watch their contracts run down and see those star players leave on a free transfer.
Wenger sold Robin van Perise to Man United and effectively helped Sir Alex Ferguson win his final title in 2012 rather than see the Dutch striker go for nothing a year or so later.
In the last few months you can see Sanchez boil over with frustration on the pitch. He may get a huge wage rise if he were to leave in the summer but I really don’t think that would be his real reason for leaving.
The fact is that Alexis is a winner and he’ll give his all to win. He wants to win more trophies and at Arsenal he probably looks at the squad and thinks they aren’t as talented or as hungry as he is.
Sanchez isn’t a prima-donna in the way of a Carlos Tevez, he’s just passionate about winning and fighting to win.
I suppose one thing recently stands out when thinking of the difference between Sanchez and some of his teammates and it happened against Bournemouth in early January.
The Cherries were three nil up before the hour-mark. Sanchez then scored in the 70th minute to get the comeback started, Lucas Perez then got another back with fifteen minutes to go. Then in injury time, Oliver Giroud scored the dramatic equaliser.
As the ball hit the back of the net on the ninety-second minute, Sanchez stampeded towards the goal to get the ball back to the centre circle so his side could try and get the winner. At the same time, Giroud was bouncing off celebrating and wasting time. Alexis Sanchez was furious, he couldn’t understand why you’d celebrate a draw when you could go for a victory!
Ultimately it’s results like that and the one against Liverpool on Saturday that keep Arsenal away from challenging for the big trophies and it must drive their number seven demented!
Now looking around Europe, a few destinations spring to mind.
Firstly I don’t see him staying in England. Arsenal really won’t want to sell him to a rival.
A return to Barcelona isn’t on the cards and I doubt Real Madrid will see him as a transfer target.
Staying in La Liga, Atletico Madrid could be an option. Sanchez shares the winning spirit Atleti boss Diego Simeone possess. Talk is rife that Antoine Griezmann is heading to Old Trafford, so Atletico could have a lot of cash to offer in the summer. But the Spanish side have a transfer ban hanging over them, so if that remains the case then he won’t be joining them this summer.
Plus let’s not forget that Simeone has already stated he’ll leave Madrid in the summer of 2018. Would Sanchez want to commit to a team that doesn’t seem to have a long term project and may not be as strong as they once were?
Juventus might be tempted to bring the Chilean back to Italy. Sanchez was sensational at Udinese earlier in his career and a move back to Serie A might work out well for him. But can the Italian giants pay the big fee for a player in their late twenties and also offer him more than £150k a week?
For my money, I think a move to Ligue 1 champions PSG could be on the cards.
The French side have the cash to offer the star the wages he’d be looking for and could also offer enough to get Arsenal around the table to discuss the transfer.
PSG’s huge first leg win and performance over Barca in the Champions League showed the world that the Parisien side can compete against the best teams in Europe. They also win a lot of domestic trophies.
The Qatari owners are always on the lookout to bring in world class talent that will enrich their squad. Sanchez certainly ticks all the boxes on that front.
While Edinson Cavani has impressed with his goal tally this term he still isn’t that blockbuster name Zlatan Ibrahimovic was at the Parc des Princes and doesn’t offer the same work-rate and all-round play the Swede did. Sanchez would be closer in replacing that void Zlatan departure left at the club.
Sanchez as a player can play in a variety of positions and that means that PSG’s boss Unai Emery can use him in various roles. Maybe on the wing, behind Cavan or up-top by himself.
While there are plenty options for Sanchez this summer, staying at Arsenal does seem to be the least likely at this stage.
It seems to me, that the forward has been left frustrated for too long by a staleness that seems to have gripped those around him at the Emirates.
So I’d expect PSG to make a big play for him in the summer and it could be his best option.
Posted on March 6th, 2017 by scott
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