Arsene Wenger says that Alexis Sanchez looks in good shape on his return to Arsenal, and that the Chilean’s much talked about desire to play and be involved in football makes him almost impossible to contain.
Good practice says you should give a player plenty of rest, especially after a summer tournament, but if the player himself is determined to play then it becomes more difficult.
The 27 year old has been ‘off’ since the Copa America final on June 27th, some of that enforced because of the ankle sprain he picked up during the game, and the boss is hopeful that he won’t suffer the same kind of debilitating post-summer start to the season as he did last year.
“The problem with Sanchez is to be cautious with him because it’s nearly impossible,” he said. “But you know what I did, I gave him a long break because I know that this was needed for him.
“They played two Copa Americas in a row and in England you don’t have a winter break. He got an injury. I know as well that you give Sanchez five weeks holiday, he will stay quiet one week and after he will start to run everywhere, and he comes back fit.
“I hope I got it right, that he had a good rest and regenerated a little bit, because he looks alright. We will see on Sunday.”
Wenger is pondering using Sanchez as a striker for the opening game of the season, but will make his mind up between him and Theo Walcott as the week goes on and he can assess fitness levels better.