Our manager again reiterated his stance, in this morning’s press-conference, that he intends to make Sanchez stay and see out the last year of his contract – if he won’t extend it – than sell him this summer.
If you listen to the so-called experts and some of our ex-players, like Alan Smith, “it makes no sense to make Sanchez stay and risk loosing him for free next summer, when you can gain £50m for him.”
Ironically, if we sell him and fail to find an adequate replacement with what’s left of the transfer window and, as a result, finish out of the top-four once again, these pundits will be the first to start slating Wenger and Arsenal. The British media love bashing us, don’t they?
In my opinion, Wenger’s decision to make Sanchez stay is not only wise but should be commended – and here are 10 reasons…
1. It will be hard if not impossible to replace Sanchez’ quality this summer.
If there were still players available in the market who are better than Sanchez, both in terms quality and experience, PSG and Mancity, with their enormous resources will be going for them.
The reality is, there isn’t. At the top of my head, I can think of Isco, Debruyne, Neymar; but we are not going to get anyone of them. So, letting Sanchez go is accepting another year in Europa – and that will be disastrous.
2. No replacement, no matter how good, is likely to get us 24 goals and 10 assists straight-away.
Buying a top talent is one thing, settling down easily into the league and performing optimally right away, is another.
Sanchez himself only had his most productive season last term – his third year.
3. He hasn’t put in a transfer request
This is very vital. The atmosphere around the club has been – since the last few weeks of last season – very good. The FA cup win and signings of Lacazette and Kolasinac have contributed to that. And giving that we have also won our first game, the last thing the team needs is any form of negativity or discontent in the dressing room.
Therefore, that Sanchez, unlike Coutinho, hasn’t put in a transfer request helps Wenger in remaining resolute.
4. We need to be back in the top-4 right away
Once you are out of the top-4 for more than a season, there is a real chance of falling away completely for many years.
The easiest way to finish in the top-4 consistently is to remain in the Champions League places. When in the CL, you make more money from UEFA and the extra gate-receipts and you also attract top players more easily.
With Everton’s aggressive summer recruitment and the strength of the top six, finishing in the top-four places is more daunting than ever; it is also likely to remain so for many years. Therefore, it’s imperative that we keep Sanchez.
5. Losing him might cost us more financially in the long run
Another very crucial reason to make Sanchez stay is because selling him is not certainly financially wiser. It might appear so in the short-term, but in the longer term if, without him, we miss out on CL again, we could end up losing more.
6. Our brand will suffer even more
To remain a truly global brand, a club needs to play in CL, have a big modern stadium, and boast a few world-class players. Therefore, we can’t afford to lose our only genuine world-class player after having missed out on CL.
7. We are negotiating improved contracts with major sponsors
There have been rumours that Adidas would be taking over our shirt sponsorship when the current Puma deal expires in 2019. The Adidas’ offer is rumoured to be £90m per year, trebling the current £30m that Puma currently pays.
A big part of what convinces giant kit-makers like Adidas to offer a lot of money is the promise of huge sales that a player like Sanchez guarantees, and also the likelihood that you will be showcasing that jersey on the grandest stage, in the CL.
8. It’s imperative that Lacazette and Sanchez play together
We are all witnesses to the beautiful, swash-buckling and efficient football Liverpool served in the 2014 season with Suarez, Sturridge, and Sterling in attack; my gut feeling is that we might see something similar with Sanchez, Lacazette and, perhaps, Ozil.
I’m very sure Lacazette and Sanchez will enjoy playing with each other
9. Nelson and Iwobi are learning from him
One player who has consistently wowed Arsenal fans and the media alike since making his debut is Reiss Nelson.
He has everything Sanchez has – pace, immense skills, vision, and end-product. If Nelson is not to be another boy-wonder who soon fades away, it’s vital that he plays with a similar world-class player like Alexis for as long as possible.
Just like Nelson, another year for Iwobi playing with Sanchez would benefit him immensely. For all the young Nigerian’s talent, he lacks in one key area; shooting and the courage to shoot – and this is one of Sanchez’ major strengths.
10. He might eventually sign
I’m not holding my breath on this one, but you just never know. Players like to be a part of good things, and Alexis is no exception.
Therefore, if Arsenal goes on to have a very exciting season, where we, at least, challenge for the title till the last two or three weeks, win Europa, with Alexis, Lacazette and Giroud setting the league alight with loads of beautiful goals and, crucially, we finish above City, Sanchez might just reconsider his stance.
After all, we are rumoured to be prepared to pay £300,000, as much as City. All these factors combined might make Sanchez stay.
Is Wenger right to keep Sanchez or we are better off taking the rumoured £60m?
Share your thoughts in the comments.