Alexis Sanchez’s departure from Arsenal to league rivals Manchester City seems imminent, especially in the January window judging by recent reports.
The move itself has been on the cards for almost a year after the Chilean failed to sign a new contract with the Gunners, but when it will happen was always the question; in the summer (which didn’t materialise), the New Year when the transfer window opens or at the end of the season?
Now, it seems, we could be seeing Sanchez in a City shirt at some point in January.
Should he make the move up north, can you really blame him?
Arsenal’s well documented under achievements are continuing this campaign, with a failed title challenge resulting in Wenger’s side falling further behind their rivals and simply stagnating in recent years, coupled with the fact the general atmosphere is toxic around the club. Fans are angry at the manager, club hierarchy and certain players, meaning it’s hardly a happy place to be currently.
Sanchez has carried this Arsenal side since his arrival and, bluntly put, hasn’t really gained anything hugely significant in return – certainly for a player of his calibre anyway.
There’s no doubting Arsenal would miss their star man, but you’d be hard pressed to find a Gooner who’d argue against the suggestion that Sanchez is good enough to play the very highest level and, with the talent he possesses, winning competitions and establishing himself further on the world stage.
His former manager, Pep Guardiola, seems favourite to tempt him back to that level with his current side and Premier League table toppers, Manchester City.
Of course moving to a domestic rival in the shape of the Citizens will be hard to take for Arsenal, but should they get a decent amount of money from a club known to spend big on a player, who could leave for nothing at the end of the season, that should certainly soften the blow and enable Arsene Wenger’s team to rebuild and go again.
The transition itself should be smooth for Sanchez, with a similar style of play and possession based game at Man City, a manager he knows well, a few familiar teammates and, undoubtedly, more money in the bank! Throw in a potential Premier League title winners medal and a Champions League assault, then he really would be virtually stupid to turn the opportunity down.
Arsenal will perhaps struggle to adapt to life without Alexis Sanchez, but they can rebuild and come again. No player is bigger than the club, after all.