Manchester United forward Alexis Sanchez will be wishing he joined Manchester City instead of the Red Devils, reckons Paul Ince. Sanchez signed for United in January 2018 in a swap deal which saw Henrikh Mkhitaryan head in the opposite direction to Arsenal. City were also interested in Sanchez but were not prepared to pay the fee Arsenal wanted as well as the Chile star’s mega wages.
With Sanchez’s Arsenal contract expiring at the end of that season, City would have taken him on a free.
But Arsenal wanted to get something for Sanchez in January, so United got their man.
But in truth it has been a nightmare for all concerned in the two years since.
Sanchez has scored just five goals in his 45 appearances for United and has looked a shadow of the player who lit up the Premier League with Arsenal.
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Ince says United expected Sanchez to have the impact that Bruno Fernandes has since he joined in January this year.
And he reckons Sanchez now regrets putting pen to paper on his United deal.
“Going to United was a mistake,” Ince told Paddy Power.
“I bet Alexis wishes he’d gone to City, like he was supposed to.
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“United was never, ever the right move for him; the team wasn’t settled and their style of play wasn’t conducive to him.
“And he was clearly desperate to make an impact. Look at the way Bruno Fernandes has hit the ground running at Old Trafford, that’s what Sanchez wanted, and was expected to do.
“But he didn’t get a lot of game time, he was used out of position, so when he did play he started to come deeper and deeper to get on the ball, to try and influence the game, and that wasn’t his game.”
Sanchez is spending this season on loan at Inter Milan, where he has also struggled.
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But former Arsenal star Paul Merson reckons the 31-year-old could reignite his career at United next term.
“Manchester United keeping hold of Alexis Sanchez and bringing him back into the fold would come as no surprise,” Merson told Sky Sports.
“I can understand Sanchez coming back to play a part at Old Trafford because, on his day, he is a great player.
“He could come back, work hard and be a success because you can’t go from being that good at Arsenal to be that bad at Manchester United, you just can’t.
“It’s definitely a better United than the one he left.
“They were flying before the suspension of the league.
“They’ve had some excellent performances and some brilliant results so that will benefit him too.
“He’s got to come back and appreciate he’s at one of the biggest clubs in the world, if not the biggest.
“There is logic in Sanchez going back at Old Trafford, he’s a top player and if they can get even half the player he was at Barcelona and Arsenal back, he’ll be an asset.”
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