Arsenal star Alexis Sanchez’s face was a photo as a few of his colleagues declined to go along with him in observing Arsenal’s second goal on Thursday night. In truth, he shouldn’t have been so shocked.
In the event that he didn’t think about their emotions towards him some time recently, he would have the substance amid a changing area investigation after Arsenal scratched a 1-1 draw at Southampton prior this month.
Sanchez wasn’t taking care of business at St Mary’s — a typical topic so far this season. After the last shriek, a gathering of players influenced their emotions to clear.
Amid the diversion Jack Wilshere, who got through Arsenal’s foundation, is said to have faced Sanchez in regards to his inefficiency under lock and key.
Sanchez’s notoriety at Arsenal’s London Colney HQ has dove as of late, and a few individuals from the Arsenal squad — and even private alcove staff — have had enough of the Chilean.
There are some who need him out one month from now, other people who wish he had been sold the previous summer.
Changing area divisions are not new. Teddy Sheringham and Andy Cole dropped out at Manchester United, yet still won real trophies together.
Less outstanding is that Aaron Ramsey and Robin van Persie didn’t generally observe eye-to-eye amid their opportunity together at Arsenal. Their common aversion was kept under wraps by Arsene Wenger.
At the point when players cross the white line on matchday they put on a unified front. That is the thing that Sanchez expected when he scored twice to enable the Gunners to win 3-2 at Selhurst Park on Thursday night.
The fact a number of his team-mates left him hanging speaks volumes. The snub was not planned but it was meaningful. Wenger did his best to brush the problem under the carpet after the game.
‘I didn’t see that,’ he said. Indeed, Wenger could well demand a show of unity if Sanchez scores when Arsenal go to West Bromwich on Sunday.
If that happens, it will be through gritted teeth.
But not even Wenger can keep the lid on a problem of which he is all too aware. One Arsenal source described Sanchez as ‘difficult to get along with’. Another branded him ‘annoying’.
The fear for Wenger is that Sanchez’s unpopularity could derail his team’s bid to break back into the top four.
He will consider offers for Sanchez next month but the Chilean has his heart set on a free transfer to Manchester City at the end of the season. Getting him out next month is not a foregone conclusion.
Wenger has done well to damp down the problem, at least publicly, for this long. The issues started simmering towards the end of last season when players and staff noticed a change in Sanchez.
His attitude and work rate in training had dropped off. Wenger spotted it — and so did his team-mates.
A quick look at the post-match stats towards the back end of last season would highlight Sanchez’s drop in effort.
Wenger likes to avoid confrontation with his players but even he couldn’t tolerate Sanchez’s behaviour in March, dropping his star forward for the game against Liverpool following a argument between the Chilean and a team-mate at the training ground.
Yet, despite the growing dissatisfaction, Sanchez remains untouchable. Certain members of the squad cannot fathom why.