Manchester United host Reading in the FA Cup 3rd round on Saturday and, should Ole Gunnar Solsjkaer afford him a start, Alexis Sanchez must give the performance of his life if he is to prove he still has a future at Old Trafford.
Interim boss Solsjkaer’s United revolution continues – the Norwegian, nicknamed the ‘baby-faced assassin’ in his playing days, has taken a maximum 12 points from his first four games at the helm and got the Red Devils playing the attractive football fans demanded in the polarised, park-the-bus Jose Mourinho days.
The main talking point since the former striker’s appointment has been the revival of Paul Pogba, who has chalked up four goals and three assists in the new system and thus more than doubled his tallies for the season in just 360 impressive minutes – make of that what you will.
However, Sanchez has not experienced a rejuvenation of any kind and has played just 66 minutes in the past three games, so what does the Chilean need to do to reignite his career in red?
Quite simply, the former Arsenal man must be man of the match. He has done nothing to justify his astronomical wages since leaving the Emirates nearly one year ago and been a shadow of the player he was at his former stomping ground.
The 30-year-old established himself as one of the best wingers in the league in previous seasons and should be able to replicate his performances of the past against weaker opposition.
The diminutive right-footer has lost his place indefinitely to an impressive Marcus Rashford and, with age not on his side here, Sanchez must make some huge improvements if he is to push the highly-rated, young Englishman out of the starting XI.
Conversely, if he cannot deliver the goods on a smaller stage this weekend, it is surely the end of his career at Old Trafford. What do you think, United fans? Is Sanchez’s time up if he doesn’t perform next time out? Let us know by voting in the poll below…