Manchester United’s new number 7, Alexis Sanchez, has now made three appearances for his new club. Whilst I had watched his first two appearances on the television, I was lucky enough to see his home debut against Huddersfield live at Old Trafford, thanks to Ryan. So how did he get on.
A MARKED MAN
I have seen him live before, playing for Arsenal and one thing I did notice was how small he was, however this doesn’t seem to effect his strength. On several occasions, players tried to outmuscle him, but he managed to hold them off and swivel away using his low centre of gravity. He was also the target of several hefty challenges (some Yeovil and Tottenham players were also guilty of this) – it was clear he was seen as a real danger man, a man to be stopped by whatever means necessary. He will without doubt be the most fouled Manchester United player until the end of the season.
HIDE? NO CHANCE
Another thing I did notice is his desire to get on the ball, even if it meant coming deep to collect it. He is always looking for a killer pass into a player in space and he most definitely doesn’t just sit back and admire them, he will then bust a gut to get further up the pitch so that he can be involved again, his work ethic from what I have seen so far cannot be questioned. Its nothing new if you ask Arsenal fans, but I did notice that he does give the ball away quite a lot, mainly due, in my opinion, because he is always trying things with through balls, intricate passing, one touch lay offs. Sanchez has a very quick speed of thought and it is understandable that it will take his new teammates time to attune to this. For me the main issue with losing possession is that as long as it is done higher up the pitch around the opposition penalty area then United can regroup before their opponents get near their goal, issues would arise if possession is lost when Sanchez is getting the ball deeper and closer to the halfway line.
THE FIRST OF MANY
The icing on the cake against Huddersfield was that he broke his goal duck for his new club. It came via the penalty spot, well of sorts, as he missed the spot kick but was on hand to tuck away the rebound and open his account as the latest wearer of the iconic number 7 shirt at Old Trafford. I have no doubts Sanchez will score a lot of goals for Manchester United. Once he is settled up in Manchester and gets to know his teammates better from what I have seen, especially live, he will be a key player for the club with his creativity and goalscoring ability.
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