The news of the impending signing of Alexis Sanchez was blowing in the wind initially awaiting a place to perch on a tree. But all that became part of history in the annals of Arsenal Football Club, when it was confined that the former Barcelona striker has signed for Arsenal. The world class ability of the Chilean has never being in doubt having shown his ability in Italy with Udinese and in Spain with Barcelona. As well as with the Chilean national team where he has scored 24 goals in 71 caps.
Now that it is no longer news that he is an Arsenal player, here are three ways in which he will improve Arsenal.
Pace scares any defender. Pace wins matches; pace reduces ten passes into three passes in a counter attacker. And Alexis Sanchez has pace to burn with limitless energy. Last season Arsenal struggled in big games when they were pressed in midfield, as there was no outlet to release the pressure because there was no player who could go behind the defence of the opposition teams in the absence of both Theo Walcott and Aaron Ramsey. This much is evident from Mikel Arteta’s statement about what the Chilean will bring to Arsenal’s game is telling. He said this:
“I think we were missing pace last season with Theo Walcott & Chamberlain injured. At some point we were playing with Cazorla, Wilshere & Giroud, all three coming in, you know? Arsenal was always a team who could play on the break and upfront had the speed to break people down. Now, I think we’re going to be more powerful and much harder to deal with.”
The statement above speaks for itself.
2. BOUNDLESS ENERGY AND DEFENSIVE COMMITMENT
The ponderous and lethargy with which Arsenal approached some games last season bothered on the tiresome particularly in the match against Southampton at the Saint Marys. But with the high tempo approach of the Chilean, as well as the fact that he is a hard working player known also for his grafting and defensive commitment to a team’s cause, he will be adding verve, passion, drive, tempo, energy to Arsenal’s play.
3. ATTACKING VERSATILITY
Alexis Sanchez can play anywhere across the attacking third. He can feature in both wings and at the tip of the attack. When he initially joined Barcelona in 2011, Pep Guardiola then manager of Barcelona spoke of his versatility thus;
“He can play in all three attacking positions, he shows intense defensive skills.”
Arsenal has a player in it hands and the lift he has brought to the club before other signings arrives, is clearly evident in the responses of players like Theo Walcott and Mesut Ozil. Many fans certainly cannot wait for the new season to start.