Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain took some time to speak about teammate Alexis Sanchez. The Chilean joined the Gunners at the start of the season for a hefty fee from Barcelona, and he has been impressive ever since his arrival.
He has had an eventful couple of months to say the least. Despite being dropped by Wenger for apparently slowing down the play whenever he is on the ball, Alexis was voted Vitality Player of the Month. He also scored a couple of stunners over the course of the month, with his spectacular volley against Manchester City winning the Goal of the Month poll.
The Ox however chose to speak of his exploits against Southampton in particular. Speaking to arsenal.com, the Ox said:
Alexis is a brilliant player and he does stuff that really does surprise you and you think, ‘how has he got out of that one? And, like against Southampton, he’ll step up and put a free-kick in the top corner.
To be fair, I knew he was going to do that because in the warm-up he had four in a row in front of a lot of fans. When he stood up to take the free-kick in the game I said to Kieran, ‘this is going in, you should have seen him in the warm-up’, and he put it top corner.
It’s moments of brilliance like that [which show his quality] but at the same time he works harder than I think I’ve seen anyone work. He is so skilful but he also does the defensive work up front and sets the tone.
The free kick was a brilliant one, but ultimately it was just a number as we went on to lose the game. But no one can blame Sanchez for a lack of commitment. Like the Ox pointed out, Sanchez also believes in getting back to do the defensive work as and when required.
It is still early days, but it looks as if this will be one of Wenger’s more inspired signings. If Sanchez continues to perform at his current level, the Gunners may yet cause a few upsets this season.