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Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Alexis Sanchez is to Arsenal What Suarez was to Liverpool

Forget about Chelsea duo Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas or West Ham’s Diafra Sakho, or Southampton’s Graziano Pelle, all summer signings (alongside a few others) who have had explosive starts to their Premier League careers.

Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez looks like the real deal. The Chilean, deemed surplus to requirements at Barcelona, is carving himself out as a fine Premier League import. After looking like he was stuttering at the starter’s gun during his infant days in England, the 25-year-old has picked up the pace and physicality of the Premier League and is more than justifying Arsenal’s £32 million outlay on him.

His latest display against Burnley where he scored Arsenal’s twin goals just served to validate his growing stature as the Gunners’ most influential player. He worked round the clock, got tucked in, attacked with venomous speed, was frighteningly powerful with the ball and showed the willpower to win than any of the other 21 men on the pitch.

His workrate, hunger and quality with the ball at his feet is something that hasn't been seen in English football since the departure of Luis Suarez. The Uruguayan, now at Barcelona, was influential for Liverpool last season as they came to within a hair’s breadth of winning their maiden title in the Premier League era. Suarez dominated, dribbled past seasoned Premier League defenders and scored goals, lots of goals, as he almost singlehandedly delivered the diadem to the Reds. 

He finished on 31 goals in 33 games for Liverpool and swept all the individual awards on offer. His departure to the Catalans has left Liverpool struggling to find goals but the gap of a Premier League player in his mould seems to have been filled by his fellow South American.

The Tocopilla-born forward cum winger has 10 goals in 16 appearances to his name, most of them crucial goals which hauled his team from the precipice of losing points. He has scored a brace in both of Arsenal’s last two matches against Burnley and Sunderland.

With 7 goals in 9 appearances, the former Udinese and Cobreloa winger is Arsenal’s topscorer in the Premier League, five goals ahead of second-placed Danny Welbeck and Aaron Ramsey. He is also joint third in the Premier League goalscoring log and his two goals in the Champions League is only bettered by Welbeck’s three.

Like all seasons gone by, Arsenal fans will be hoping the team can mount a serious Premier League title charge. They have come short, very short, before but perhaps the presence and form of Alexis Sanchez will bring them so close like Suarez did with Liverpool last season. 

And That's thesteifmastertake!!