Arsenal are on the verge of signing Barcelona’s Alexis Sanchez for £30m according to reports. The Chilean striker has been recently linked with a move to Liverpool but it appears as though the Gunners are set to capture the 25-year-old.
The deal will see him sign a 150,000-a-week contract with the London based club. Barcelona are keen to offload Sanchez as to make way for the imminent arrival of Luis Suarez, who is expected to join the Catalans in the coming days.
The move would represent another major step forward for Arsenal in terms of challenging for the Premier League title. Sanchez has come off the back of an excellent World Cup, where he played an influential role in Chile’s passage to the Round of 16.
He also returns from an excellent season at Barcelona, where he was perhaps the only player who could salvage some pride from a pretty dismal season for the Catalan club.
2013-14 saw Sanchez mature as he scored 19 goals in La Liga, his biggest total for a single season. He became a more well-rounded footballer, one who is more capable of choosing the right decision in the final third. When he arrived at Barcelona from Udinese, he was still quite raw and some of the choices he made in the final third were erratic and thoughtless.
The success of Chile has helped him due to the fact that he is seen as Chile’s star player. He’s took on this role well and has developed into a player who takes real responsibility on the pitch. His conduct during the defeat to Brazil in the World Cup Round of 16 was a testament to the footballer he has molded himself into over the past year.
Alexis Sanchez is a good fit for Arsenal and he does fit the philosophy of the football club. Able to play anywhere across the front-line, he is a versatile footballer who is deployable in any system. He is an ideal candidate to solve the problems Olivier Giroud faced last season. The French striker was regularly isolated in games as he had no one to play off of; Sanchez at least gives him that option of someone to feed off and interlink with.
There’s still a lot to come from Alexis Sanchez, that’s why it’s slightly strange Barcelona are allowing him to leave. At 25, there’s room for him to develop into an even better attacking force. There’s been signs he can develop into one of the best strikers in the world. His intelligence on the football field has become heightened and his professionalism has grown over the last year.
Pressure shouldn’t be an issue if he comes to Arsenal, as he’s already dealt with the Catalan media at one of the most pressurized clubs in the World. The English media may be tame in comparison, but that may be speaking too soon.