Wenger: Simple and focused…that’s the Alexis we want

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Arsene Wenger says Arsenal benefitted from Alexis Sanchez playing simple and with focus as the Chile international helped himself to a match-winning brace against Crystal Palace.

The 29-year-old took his tally for the season to eight with two second half strikes helping the Gunners to a 3-2 win that keeps their Champions League qualification ambitions alive.

After a number of below-par performances in recent weeks, Sanchez was noticeably tidier in possession, something that his manager appreciated.

“I felt he was very good tonight, from the first minute on he was focused, he was simple again,” Wenger told his post-match press conference.

“This kind of Alexis is a good player, we know him and that’s the kind of performance you want from him.”

Unsurprisingly, the subject of Alexis’ future also came up. The striker will be free to sign a pre-contract agreement with a foreign club from Monday and Wenger admits he’s not sure what will happen when the January transfer window opens.

“First of all nobody knows what will happen and it’s always difficult to speculate. At the moment we are focused on the short term, the short term is win the next game with the players who are committed and ready to fight.

“It’s not a guarantee how long you will stay somewhere – as long you are somewhere you give your best.”

It was reported earlier in the week that Alexis was spotted in Paris over the Christmas break giving rise to suggestions he could be about to move to Paris Saint Germain.

“That’s true,” replied Wenger when asked if the player had visited the French capital.

“We had two days off on the 24th and 25th that was public, but he did not go to Chile. He met his family somewhere but not in Chile.”

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