When your nickname is “The Wonder Boy”, you better have something special to back it up. Luckily for Manchester United target Alexis Sanchez, he does.
The Chilean winger has caught the eye of Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson with some scintillating displays for both club and country. He was a stand-out performer for Chile in this summer’s World Cup as Marcelo Bielsa’s team reached the second round. Chile were a revelation in South Africa, playing wonderfully attacking, incisive football and Sanchez was a key component in Chile’s adventurous style of play.
Sanchez’s style of play has seen him compared to former United forward Cristiano Ronaldo and Sanchez’s game certainly has some similarities to the Portuguese. He is blessed with incredible pace and wonderfully quick feet along with great technical ability and creativity. He has the ability to trouble defenders with his direct style of play which is something that Manchester United would certainly be interested in.
Sanchez started his professional career in 2005 as a 16 year old in his native Chile with Cobreloa where he impressed almost immediately. He showed a poise and maturity beyond his tender years as he quickly became a regular for the Mineros, scoring 12 goals in 51 appearances. His displays for Cobreloa altered Italian side Udinese to Sanchez’s prodigious talents and they bought the youngster for £2 million in 2006.
The next step in Sanchez’s development was a season-long loan Argentinean giants River Plate. While on loan with Los Millonarios, Sanchez added another winner’s medal to his list of honours with a 2008 Clausura Championship.
After 3 years of loan spells, Sanchez finally arrived in Udinese in the summer of 2008 and slotted straight into the first-team at the Stadio Friuli. He became an instant favourite with the Bianconeri faithful with his tricky displays on the Udinese wing.
With Udinese languishing at the foot of the Serie A table, there is a very good chance that Sanchez would be receptive to a move to Old Trafford. Sanchez himself has expressed a desire to move to United if the opportunity were to present itself. Speaking to Spanish newspaper As, Sanchez said “[United]? Obviously I’d like to play for a club like that”.
Apparently, the feeling is mutual. Sir Alex Ferguson has admitted his interest in the 21-year old as he looks to bolster his attacking options:
“We have looked at Sanchez and he has impressed us, as have other players,”
“He has had very good games and is an interesting project.”
“We have gathered some background, as with other footballers at his level, but nothing more than this – for the moment.”
With United currently without winger Antonio Valencia for the rest of the season, a move for Sanchez in the January transfer window wouldn’t be out of the question.
However, Udinese have tied Sanchez down to a long-term contract at the Stadio Friuli which expires in 2014. No doubt Udinese are reluctant to part with their most coveted asset and it would take a substantial bid from United to secure Sanchez’s services.
At only 21-years old, Sanchez is already showing incredible promise at such an early stage of his career. He has the ability to be game-changer with his outrageous array of skills while also bringing a winning mentality from his time in South America. The only criticism of Sanchez would be that he doesn’t score enough goals but it is only a minor concern.
If Sir Alex does make a move for the Chilean, it could prove to be a shrewd move in the long-run as Sanchez has the talent to be an Old Trafford legend in the making.
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