Wenger backs ‘motivated’ Alexis to come good

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Arsene Wenger admits that Alexis Sanchez has struggled for form in recent weeks but insists the Chile international will get back to his best soon.

Sidelined by a hamstring problem for two months, the attacker has scored only one goal in seven games since his comeback against Chelsea at the tail end of January.

There’s no hiding that it’s a poor return from last year’s top scorer and a state of affairs that’s exacerbated by the fact his teammates are also misfiring in the final third.

Asked in his pre-Manchester United press conference whether Alexis needs more time to find his feet, Arsene Wenger admitted ‘yes’ before backing the ex-Barcelona player to come good.

“Yes because he’s a highly motivated player and I believe that he’s conscious of it as well. He wants to do even better.

“Let’s focus on the team performance and after that every individual will benefit from a good team performance.”

After Sunday’s test at Old Trafford, the Gunners face a hectic March that takes in six fixtures in three different competitions. It’s a schedule that could well break or make the team’s fortunes in a year where they are bidding to end a 12 year wait for the league title.

Reflecting on the tests ahead, Wenger said: “It is the key period. We work the whole season for this period and that’s where you’re really tested but it’s where you have an opportunity to show your quality as well. On that front, that is the most interesting period of the season.

“You can show quality, nerves and desire as well. We need to focus on the Premier League where we have a big part to play. Everybody drops points and it is unpredictable. We have rebuilt a good run in the Premier League and we need to continue that.

“How many points that will be needed [to win the title]? We don’t know. Let’s not set any limit on the number of points we can get. We have put ourselves in a strong position again. We want to take advantage of that and continue our good run in the Premier League.”

33 COMMENTS

        • Giroud &/or Welbeck hitting top form are ones who can make the difference and give a fillip to the whole team. Though a dazzling Sanchez performance or two may just help kick start that.

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        • Alexis ozil and co. Have been below par for too long. Im okay with ox being out, obviously hope not for long. But hope he uses this time to reflect on his game because frankly speaking its not good enough for arsenal. Walcott needs to up his game. Flamini needs to stay out of first 11, play elneny or keep the ram/coq partnership. Front 4 need to be more confident, clinical. I think its just aour mental weakness creeping in…wenger needs to get them believing in thier abilities again. Also thik giroud needs a rest, cos that attempted shit in the box against barca cries out to me lack of confidence/mentally tired…. ure a striker in the box….think about how your going to get a SHOT off rather than this tika taka bs 24/7. JUST SHOOT!!

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    • The lads just need to be in place for putting away those Ozil assists.

      It was no coincidence Ox’s goal came from the one he hit the most calmly. They’re all snatching at them at the moment.

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  1. United have glaring weaknesses across the starting XI. Whenever we have a relative weakness or a “weak link” (Per’s pace, Flam…) in the squad I worry it will be exposed and you feel like it can happen anytime. How come we don’t seem to have this predatory ability to expose the weaknesses in most teams we face?

    I’m hoping this match will be a mauling of similar magnitude to our 8-2 defeat so we can get even with them, but you just know it will be a hard fought win if we make it.

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    • We have the second best defensive record with 23 goals allowed. Sp*rs lead the table with 20 goals. Even the mighty Real Madrid has conceded more goals than arsenal. (24 in 25 games – Arsenal has played 26),

      Our weaknesses aren’t at the back.

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      • And Per actually rarely gives up a goal due to pace – it’s losing his position and mistiming a tackle overcommitting him that left him out this last time. Nobody has the pace to recover from that.

        But I agree with your point, we need Welbeck or Theo and Alexis looking to cause trouble in behind. That is, if an in behind space exists. When the opposition parks it in their box there is nowhere to run into..

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  2. ….’He wants to do even better’. I bet he does, you can see his frustration, but at the moment his weak points seem to be emphasised. He needs to do better, for himself and the team. The team work shown by Barca is seamless, as was also shown by the invincible team on the Pires video… Some of that please! Onwards and upwards coyg, don’t bottle it!

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  3. Maintaining possession against a van Gaal side at the old toilet is paramount. Frustrating his under strength side will force them into riskier behavior and allow Alexis to flourish on sunday.

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  4. I don’t give a rats about the Barcelona game, send the u16 team for some experience – the league and our fa cup are WAY more important so can we start getting in with the goals starting this Sunday with the demolition of manure?

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  5. How come when our players take so many games to find a bit of form but other teams players are back to form so much quicker

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  6. I’m tired of reading he tries! When Özil was back after 4 months last season, he was spot on immediately! In no time he showed the difference! I just feel Sanchez did the season of his life last season and basta!

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  7. For fucks sake if we don’t smash the shittiest edition of ManU in decades this weekend I might just break down and cry for an hour or two.

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  8. If only Wenger can snatch jesse from Madrid, things will get better.. He can be an alternative striker with pace and good runs between center backs.

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  9. Can Wenger please stop blabbing and tell his players to play some top top quality football, win some bloody trophies and give our ever loyal and passionate fans(home & Away)their money’s worth. Damn!

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  10. Once he scores a goal I reckon his confidence and form will come back. Right now it seems like he is over thinking his form and trying to do everything himself.

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    • Complete agreement- besides, most of his goals are not scored by attacking with the ball from the corner of the box – he gets on the end of something IN the box, and most of his assists have been from rounding the defender wide and slotting it in or a surprise deep cross.

      At least that’s what my failing memory recalls.

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  11. ‘Luuuke – trust the Force!’ Obviously coming back from injury he’s keen to get back to his best asap, but in doing so I wonder if he might be actually be trying a bit too hard. He reminds me of a golfer who snatches at his downswing because he hasn’t completed his backswing properly first. Perhaps he needs to breathe and relax a bit to help get the timing back into his game.

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