Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta’s relationship with Alexis Sanchez as ‘free transfer available’

Arsenal and Burnley fans fight post game

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Given that technical director Edu recently conceded that Arsenal made a big mistake signing Willian from Chelsea on a free transfer, the Gunners are expected to resist any slim temptation to re-sign the club’s former danger man Alexis Sanchez. The Chilean is widely considered one of the best players of the Emirates Stadium era before he turned his back on the club to join Manchester United in January 2018.

He managed a grand total of three Premier League goals during his time at Old Trafford though before Inter Milan put United out of their misery, taking Sanchez off their hands.

Sanchez has since claimed he knew he made a mistake signing for United after just a single training session, although he would receive a reported £560,000 weekly salary for his troubles.

Despite betraying Arsenal, the joy he spread in north London during his time at the club continues to be remembered fondly by supporters, particularly during recent times of crisis.

During his time as a player, Mikel Arteta was right behind Alexis from his very first day at the club, praising his attitude shortly after he signed from Barcelona in 2014.

“Attacking-wise this season, we are going to be more different and we are going to have more of a surprise factor,” Arteta told Arsenal Player.

“(Alexis) looks very good. He has got pace, that special technique, his feet are so, so quick.

“He is a bit cheeky on the pitch, and got those runs, that movement, is always on the shoulder of a defender and he wants to score goals. Alexis has the right attitude here – very humble.

“He is going to do well – I think the fans are very excited and I think they are right because we have signed some player here.”

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Arteta’s opinion on Alexis didn’t change. He loved having him in the team and considered him to be one of the best players in the Premier League.

“Alexis’s best moment is yet to come because he always wants to improve, he is always looking for more,” Arteta told the IBTimes UK.

“After the summer holidays, he struggled a little bit but he is currently in very good form and with great confidence. With the ambition he has, he is certainly going to go further.

“Last year, he was already a key player for us. He has what it takes to be the best player in the Premier League, I am sure about that.

“But he needs the help of the rest of the team. Hazard, for instance, last year won [the Premier League player of the year] award because Chelsea won the title and because he had a very strong team around who helped him a lot.

“We have to do the same with Alexis to help him to be the best.”

Arteta was retired by the time Alexis left Arsenal but he was a big part of Manchester City’s plan to try and sign the forward during the January transfer window in 2018.

United ended up winning the battle after City walked away from the table but Arteta, who was Pep Guardiola’s assistant, was understood to have played a role in the club’s attempts to land the Chile international.

Now Arteta is of course in the hot-seat himself and while it’s clear he holds Sanchez in high regard, Arsenal are unlikely to take up the chance to sign their former player on a free transfer.

Inter Live claim the Serie A champions are ready to cut their losses and let the 32-year-old depart the San Siro for nothing, permitting another club are ready to take him off their hands.

Sanchez has missed a staggering 26 games in just two seasons through injury and it’s clear the former Arsenal man is now over the hill. His best days are beyond him.

While the fantasy of seeing Alexis tear things up for a second time at the Emirates may still appeal to some fans who are now over his departure to United, the chances of that happening are next to nothing, despite his relationship with Arteta.

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