Manager Arsene Wenger was addressing the club’s press to provide updates on various players, rumors and the latest on injury, as expected the most discussed person at the club at the moment is Alexis Sanchez and so the manager was asked about his thinking towards Alexis.
Since returning from international duty and failing to secure a transfer away from Arsenal, Alexis Sanchez have not started a premier league game for Arsenal including the match against Chelsea, the decision to start Alexis on the bench caught everyone by surprise, prompting a hilarious facial expression from Ian Wright.
Alexis started the Carabao game against Doncaster and stayed on the pitch all through, but this was generally considered a game against a lesser opponent or an inferior competition.
Wenger have now provided explanation why Alexis has been starting on the bench recently but made some astonishing claims in doing so.
LACK OF FITNESS & INJURY:
“I just try to get him back to full fitness and for me the Europa League and the League Cup is important as well. So I just try to give him competition and to get him back to his best, because I gave him a long holiday and after that long holiday this year he had a real rest. He came back not really fit, it took us time to get him back and then he got injured”
The lack of fitness claim is actually evident in is performances so far, despite his lack of match fitness, his contribution to the team is still noteworthy.
His solo goal against Cologne and the Theo Walcott assist against Doncaster are an indication of what a half fit Alexis Sanchez can do.
HE IS NO MORE THAN ANOTHER & NO REAL PLAYER HIERARCHY:
“All the players are [in my plans], he’s not more than another. I said I chose the team at Chelsea who can be strong on the counter-attack and fight very hard and Alexis could have played if he was 100 per cent fit at the start, but for me there’s no real hierarchy”
This claim should alarm any fan of Arsenal football club. Alexis Sanchez is not only the best property Arsenal possess, he is one of the best both in the Premier League and Europe.
The claim that Sanchez is no more than another player is indeed astonishing given his all-round play and goals contribution to the squad.
This may be Wenger attempting to train his team to survive without Alexis, in readiness for his departure either in January or July 2018 but such claims may have a further demoralizing effect on the player whose confidence is low and concentration is divided.
Saying all your strikers are the same is either you being patronizing to the other strikers because clearly, they are not as good as Alexis Sanchez, or deliberately undermining Alexis, either case, this is a poor media management by the manager.
Every club have hierarchy and there is no position on the pitch where hierarchy is far more important that the forward position. No winning team rotate their top striker, even against lesser oppositions.
Scoring goals is like a drug to players like Alexis Sanchez, the more goals they score, the more confidence, and as such players like this do not thrive in a rotational system.