Martin Keown has claimed that Arsenal need Alexis Sanchez for Sunday’s crunch encounter with Chelsea. The former Gunners defender hailed the display of the Chilean, whose goal put his side in the lead for the first time in the match. Alexis has been the stand-out star in North-London over the past couple of seasons, and that doesn’t look set to change despite his uncertain future.
Sanchez is into the final year of his current deal, and was believed to have pushed to join Manchester City in the summer, but was forced to stay put, and he has already shown us why he remains so important to us.
Keown said: ‘I think Wenger has made it very clear. He wants the player in his team and when he’s almost forced to play, as he was then, he comes up with the goods and there’s no doubt he is still the outstanding player in that Arsenal team – and boy do they need him now because it’s a massive game coming up at the weekend as well.
‘He’s a little bit short of fitness but he’s the sort of player who needs to play his way into fitness and he tries things all the time. He’s a great talent.’
Hopefully Sanchez will be fit enough to feature against the Premier League champions on Sunday despite today’s tough victory, as he will no doubt be pivotal in how the result pans out.
Our hard-fought 3-1 win will have given us a huge boost going into the trip to Stamford Bridge, but I fear that we could lose some heart if he was taken out of the starting line-up.
Can we beat Chelsea without Alexis? Is his head right to play in such a crucial encounter?