Arsene Wenger is apparently concerned about Alexis Sanchez and his exhaustion levels, and consequently could hand him a mid-season break to help him recharge, as reported by the Mirror.
The Chilean still doesn’t look to have recovered from his hectic summer schedule, and looks badly in need of a break. He hasn’t looked nearly as sharp as he did in his first season, and a proper break could really do him some good.
Unfortunately, Chile have matches both tonight (12th November) and next week on the 17th. Alexis is unlikely to be rested over the international break, as he is so key to Chile’s success. It will therefore be up to us to give him the break he needs, and when to leave him out will be a massive decision.
Up until now, resting him hasn’t really been an option. With a plethora of injuries, we were short up front as it was, so he’ll almost certainly have to wait until a few key players return from their spells on the sidelines.
We’ve got some excellent fixtures coming up, which may seem like a good time to rest him. With games against West Bromwich Albion, Sunderland, Norwich, and Aston Villa in the Premier League, as well as games against Dinamo Zagreb and Olympiacos in the Champions League.
The problem is, these are all must win games. If we want to have any chance of qualifying for the Champions League then we have to win both our upcoming games. We don’t want to end up in the Europa League for obvious reasons, so unless Wenger has totally given up on Europe then we need to put out our best team.
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On the other hand though, the Premier League is where our focus should be this season, as it’s arguably our best chance at lifting the trophy in years. We can’t afford to drop points against the relative minnows of the league, and as we all know there are no easy games in the English top flight.
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Hopefully Wenger gets things right, and he’s able to give Alexis the break he needs without impacting our season negatively.