Monday, January 20, 2020

Alexis Sanchez Should Seal His Return To Italy As Soon As Possible

Juan Pablo Aravena in Editorial, Serie A 16 May 2019

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It’s not a secret that Alexis Sanchez had a poor year in 2019. But let’s be honest. His whole 2018-19 campaign was well below the expectations.

The Chilean forward struggled to gain consistent playing time with both Jose Mourinho and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, and he also struggled with injuries far more than in other of his previous seasons in Europe. As a result, Manchester United fans are keen to let Alexis leave this summer. Even though the Chilean is good enough to play for a top club such as Manchester United, a change of scenery could do wonders for him.

Sometimes it’s best to take two steps back in order to take two forward. And with that in mind, Alexis should strongly consider a return to Italy. Both Inter Milan and Juventus are interested in him, and things have gotten to a point where Alexis’ agent, Fernando Felicevich, has been in meetings discussing the possibility to a more formal extent.

The advantages of Alexis returning to Italy

There are plenty of positives when we consider Alexis’ potential return to Italy. First, he would leave Manchester United and that will undoubtedly be good. While known as a player able to withstand the pressure, who could perform at a high level when your own fans boo against you? And in an environment where every single news is taken with negativism and criticism?

Frankly, that must take a toll on a player’s head. And Alexis case wasn’t different. He needs to go to a place where he can feel he’s wanted and important. Like he was in Udinese and Arsenal.

Plus, Italian football fits much better to Sanchez’s playing style. Even though he has no problem to leave a player behind or two with his skill, Alexis thrives when exploiting spaces left by opposing defences and attacking gaps in the final third. He couldn’t do much of that at United since he was caged at a left-wing role in a league where both teams don’t stop running during the entire match. He will certainly find things easier on Italian soil.

Plus, look at the teammates he would possibly have. If he joins Juventus, he’d play alongside Cristiano Ronaldo and Paulo Dybala. And if he goes to Inter, he’d lineup alongside Mauro Icardi and Ivan Perisic. He would easily fit on both clubs.

Where would he fit best?

The fit becomes tricky. Alexis’ best position lies on the right wing – even if he has been deployed as a left winger ever since he joined Barcelona. He can operate on both flanks, so finding a fit for him shouldn’t be too hard. But based on the playing style of both sides, he would undoubtedly flourish at Juventus. The sole idea of Alexis exploiting the spaces left by Ronaldo and generated by Miralem Pjanic – just to name two players – seems quite exciting.

It only remains to be seen whether Juventus can reach an agreement with Manchester United. But if The Red Devils want to sell and The Old Lady want to sign, both should reach an agreement fairly easily. It’s only a matter of time to get this done. There’s no doubt both sides would benefit from this potential transfer.


Juan Pablo Aravena

A freelance writer and sports analyst with almost five years of experience in the industry before joining SoccerNews, Juan Pablo Aravena is based in Chile and currently contributes to several publications and websites including SoccerNews, 12up, and Sports From The Basement, while also working as a fantasy beat writer for RotoWire, as a database editor for EA Sports, and as a football analyst for SmartOdds and InsideFutbol. His areas of focus are Serie A, Bundesliga, Premier League, LaLiga, and Ligue 1, but he has also written about MLS and South American football in the past.



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