Alexis Sanchez has finally completed his extremely-protracted move away from Arsenal, joining rivals Manchester United, for a fee estimated at £20 million, while Arsenal welcome midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s arrival as the return half of the deal.
The versatile, volatile Chilean forward arrived at Arsenal in the summer of 2014 from Barcelona and quickly showed why he was worth his £32 million transfer fee, netting 25 goals in all competitions in his first season, and throughout the course of the next two-and-a-half-seasons he tallied 55 more goals while helping the club capture two FA Cups.
In exchange for Alexis, Arsenal receive the type of midfielder and creative player in Mkhitaryan that they’ve long missed the past couple seasons. The Armenian international, 28, thrives best playing behind forwards, and his ability to work in tight spaces with and without the ball make him a threat both in passing and shooting from dangerous positions.
Both clubs will probably feel they got the better end of the deal, and there’s probably more truth to that than there is not. Alexis provides United another goal-scoring option who can also pair up very well with dynamic players such as Paul Pogba and Juan Mata while freeing up salary from a player that didn’t necessarily fit within their current setup under manager Jose Mourinho, and Arsenal gains another world-class midfielder that will help shoulder the playmaking burden currently residing mostly on Mesut Özil’s shoulders which in turn will make players like Alexander Lacazette happy to run alongside with.
Good luck to Alexis in his new adventure up north, and a big, hearty welcome to Henrikh. Enjoy the ride.