Sources at Manchester United have claimed that Alexis Sanchez looks “extremely unhappy” in training as his situation at the club continues to worsen, according to the Independent‘s Miguel Delaney.
The Chilean, who joined the club from Arsenal in January, has only scored four goals under Jose Mourinho and finds himself now sidelined with injury until 2019.
Many believe that Sanchez’s situation at Old Trafford is reminiscent of Angel di Maria’s tumultuous period at the club and will, as a result, culminate in the forward seeking another fresh start in January.
According to Delaney, Mourinho would be open to selling Sanchez if the right opportunity came about, although that is unlikely considering his enormous wage packet, which some have said goes beyond £500,000-a-week.
Arsene Wenger was personally surprised to see Mourinho break the bank for Sanchez. The former Arsenal boss knew that the 29-year-old, who relies on coordinated and fast attacking movement, would not suit the way United play under Mourinho. That notion has become prophetic.
There was also a feeling among those at Arsenal that Sanchez had burned himself out. Since 2005, he has pushed himself to play a heavy number of fixtures per season, often covering more ground than anyone else on the pitch. That he has covered less ground than Juan Mata this season is telling.
Questions surrounding Sanchez’s personality are also worth asking. He lives largely as a “loner”, and did so during his time in London, but the recent separation with a long-term partner, combined with having no real friendships in Manchester and feeling lost on a tactical level at United, has understandably tarnished his spirit.
If he could, one day, come into training and feel something like his best, playing under a system which at the very least plays to his strengths, then perhaps that spirit – so necessary for driving Sanchez around the pitch every week – will return.
At the moment, though, he is feeling a way which aligns with the mood of United in 2018: miserable.