After the last few games and a couple of shows of petulance, anger, frustration or whatever you wish to call it from the Arsenal and Chile forward, Arsenal fans have an extra reason to be concerned about our star striker, but Arsene Wenger has insisted that we have no need to worry.
With the contract talks between the player and the club still ongoing and all sorts of transfer rumours doing the rounds of the football press, Arsenal fans are already worried about this aspect of the Alexis situation and I think we will remain so until he puts pen to paper on a new deal.
But the boss has moved to allay any extra concern that the Chilean’s strop after being subbed at Swansea may have raised among Gooners. As well as pointing out that it is his decision and that Danny Welbeck is in need of minutes on the pitch, Wenger was relaxed about the reaction and explained that no player wants to come off.
He told Arsenal Player, “Look, he is hugely influential, Sanchez. You look at the numbers, he had scored 13 goals, seven assists, now 14 goals. So he was involved in about 25 goals in our team. But we also had players on the bench who are strikers, who need competition. We were 4-0 up. Ozil as well comes back from sickness so it was a good opportunity not to be stupid.
“All the players are frustrated when they come off, some show it, some not. I am long enough in the job to know that. I just make the decision I feel is right and that’s it. Nothing more than that. He’s a good guy who gives a lot and wants to do well, always, for the team. There is no problem. But every culture is different. Some South Americans are a bit different to Europeans, Southern Europeans are different to northern Europeans. You have to respect that. That’s why we are a multi-national team.
“We speak always, about everything. Honestly I cannot even answer. I don’t look, I don’t look at that. I look at how well the players do who come on, how comfortable they are, because Danny Welbeck has not played for two years. That’s for me much more important than an individual response. That is vital when a player 25 years of age with regular play in the national team comes on, you have an opportunity to give him game time – that’s something that is vital when you come back from such a long injury.”
And just for good measure the Frenchman pointed out, as reported by Metro, that Arsenal are in a better position having a player like Alexis desperate to play than some other clubs having the opposite sort of problem with the likes of Diego Costa and Dimitri Payet.
He said, “I’d rather have someone who always wants to be involved than someone who doesn’t want to play.
“I have enough problems – I don’t need a Costa problem on top of that.”
It all seems pretty reasonable when you put it like that, so can Arsenal relax about this aspect of the Sanchez situation at least?