Alexis Sanchez has made it clear that he is not struggling under the pressure at Manchester United, insisting that high expectations serve to raise his game.
The Chilean, who has now gone seven games without a goal, attracted widespread derision for another inefficient attacking display during Man United’s 2-1 defeat to Sevilla.
Some have called for Sanchez, just ten games into his United career, to be left out of Jose Mourinho‘s starting XI for this weekend’s meeting with Brighton and Hove Albion.
But Sanchez, when asked about whether he was feeling the pressure at Old Trafford, noted that it was not a hampering factor.
“The pressure doesn’t play against me, it helps me,” he said. “The more pressure I’m under, the better I feel. I feel like an important player at world level.”
“Being the best-paid in the Premier League fills me with pride at being Chilean.”
The main theme that has run through all of Sanchez’s performances at United so far is a sense of disjunct with the rest of his teammates, who are no doubt still trying to figure him out – to gain a heuristic understanding of his movements on the pitch.
And Sanchez, in turn, is still getting to grips with those around him. For all the natural chutzpah he brings to the pitch, you can still detect a certain measure of doubt in his mind, as if still not quite attuned to the shape and feel of United’s play – something clearly restricting him from finding good positions in the final third.
Moving from a big club to a huge club in January is never easy, but supporters will desperately hope he starts to take up a central role sooner rather than later.