Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez scored twice as the Gunners enjoyed a 2-0 win over Hull City on Saturday afternoon, and set a record for most league goals in a season for his troubles.
The Chilean international has already surpassed Olivier Giroud’s 16-goal return from the last two seasons and still has 13 league games to play.
It’s been five years since any player has scored more than Sanchez, with Robin Van Persie bagging 30 league goals in 2011/12, but how many goals will the South American finish the campaign with?
Sanchez vindicates Wenger’s tactical change
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger spoke earlier in the season on how Sanchez has finally adapted as a centre-forward, having struggled for consistency in the role in previous season. Despite having fantastic off-the-ball movement and being a ruthless finisher, he often found himself not making an impact in the penalty area but spending too much time in the build-up. However, Sanchez has become a prolific striker and is likely to remain in the role for the rest of the campaign.
Sanchez has scored 17 goals in 25 Premier League games this season, averaging a goal every 126 minutes. Including assists, the 28-year-old has scored and created 25 goals in the top-flight and remains key for Arsenal’s chances of success. Giroud has played second fiddle as a result of Sanchez’s form, but has scored an impressive eight goals in 658 minutes of Premier League football.
Nevertheless, he’s never managed to hit 20 league goals for the season, a tally Sanchez looks destined to surpass given the games remaining, which vindicates his manager’s faith this season.
Relentless industry and individual brilliance can elevate Arsenal
Alexis Sanchez is undoubtedly Arsenal’s best player, and is influential due to his selfless attitude on the pitch that makes the Gunners a stronger side. He’s not only technically proficient, Sanchez is renowned for his work rate and determination to play every minute of every game, and doesn’t take his foot off the gas regardless of the result.
When Arsenal are behind in a game, Sanchez will take it upon himself to do everything in his power to help turn things around, a contrasting attitude to many who have been accused of “going hiding” this season, and his winning mentality is evident from his reactions when things aren’t going their way.
He has outstanding dribbling ability to weave through defenders, boasting 72 successful dribbles in the league, and has been the creative hub with Ozil becoming more of a goalscorer than assister this season (63). And now he’s playing up front, Arsenal have a striker who will stretch defences and run in behind, rather than Giroud’s target man attributes that relied heavily on good support from the midfield.
Alexis Sanchez will finish the season with 26 goals in the Premier League if he maintains his scoring ratio, and is 3/1 to be top goalscorer in the Premier League in 2016/17.
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