Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has weighed in on the debate surrounding Eden Hazard and Alexis Sanchez as the two square off this weekend by claiming that our Chilean star is Hazard’s the biggest competitor for the PFA Player of the Year award (via Arsenal Player).
Alexis was nominated alongside Hazard and, after netting 22 goals whilst also assisting 11, our superstar has every chance of collecting the gong, although the Belgian is the favourite (via oddschecker).
Arriving from Barcelona to become our second most expensive signing after Mesut Ozil, Alexis took the form he showed in Brazil at the World Cup into the season and has captured many with his infectious work-rate coupled with outstanding individual brilliance.
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It is those qualities that has convinced Wenger that Alexis is on-par with Hazard and should the Belgian claim the award this year, the boss believes the two will fight for the individual awards next year too.
“Alexis had a big impact and let’s not forget that for Hazard it is not the first season but for Alexis it is,” Wenger told reporters.
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“He will give him a fight and if Alexis doesn’t make it this year, he will give him a fight as well for next season.
“I think everybody would agree that Hazard has had a great season and one of the aspects of Sunday’s game will be to keep him quiet.”
Despite the many subplots that will be present on Sunday, Alexis’ battle with Hazard could be the most crucial in determining where the three points end up.