Alexis Sánchez: What will happen to the Arsenal misfit?

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In June Alexis Sánchez contract at Arsenal us up. But what will happen to the Arsenal misfit? Sam May takes a look.

If you believe Pep Guardiola, there was a gentleman’s agreement that he would join the champions elect on a free and thus earn an even bigger wedge per week than he already does.

At Christmas however, it looked like he was on the move early. Perhaps maybe a request from the Chilean to his agent to get him in early at Manchester City and pick up a Premier League winners medal via the back door?

All well and good, not. His demands, the spin off for his agent and Arsenal trying to recoup some the huge money they have lauded on someone who allegedly hit out when it wasn’t going his way, has now put him in the mucky stuff.

Chelsea had a sniff, and Jose Mourinho joined in – no doubt trying to keep up with the “Jones’s” or the Mansours to be precise. By all accounts Manchester United were to meet the sky-high demands to keep him away from City.

With the Sky Blues pulling out, this now leaves only the Red side of Manchester who want to take him and they now want to use Henrikh Mkhitaryan as a make weight. A player who Mourinho has stated, doesn’t have a future at the club much longer. The player himself wants away, but also more than his current £140,000 a week he is currently receiving – despite the fact he isn’t even playing for the Red Devils.

The cash strapped Gunners are not willing to pay off and that could scupper Sánchez going anywhere anytime soon. Arsenal will look to a replacement for Theo Walcott who has joined Everton for £20 million as well as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who joined rivals Liverpool.

If it falls through then there is only one option for Arsene Wenger, to put the Chilean misfit in the Gunners Under-23s squad for the remainder of the campaign. Would the true Arsenal fans support that decision? Its highly likely they would. Sánchez and his agent would have themselves to blame if that happened. Who then will take him on in the summer?

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Liverpool should look no further than Grêmio’s Arthur to replace Philippe Coutinho

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Having sold Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona for £142 million, Liverpool should make a move inform Grêmio midfielder Arthur, writes Sam May.

Riyad Mahrez, Thomas Lemar, Julian Draxler and Manuel Lanzini are just a few names that have been touted to replace the Reds former Brazilian, but making a move for Arthur would be a wise and clever choice by the Reds.

The 21-year-old was only picture wearing a Barcelona shirt before Christmas, causing speculation he was destined for the Camp Nou. He does look set for the Premier League it seems however, with Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United all expressing interest. Atlético Madrid had also been keen, but interest has since cooled.

Arthur has drawn comparisons with current Barcelona midfielder Andrés Iniesta, the man Coutinho looks set to replace in Catalonia, due to his exceptional passing, time on the ball, dribbling skills and all round technique.

He has been a key figure for Brazil’s Under 20 side, but is yet to make an appearance for the senior side, despite being called up in September by head coach Tite to face Chile and Bolivia, due to his impressive displays for Grêmio. Even though he has played the majority of the time in the defensive role for his current club, there is no reason why he can’t push forward and adapt into the attacking midfield areas.

Not only would a move to Anfield help the player to secure a place in Brazilian World Cup squad ahead of Russia in a few months time, he would also link up with fellow countryman Roberto Firmino.

Liverpool’s current 26-year-old only tweeted a few days ago saying: “Liverpool is no longer the same without you my magical brother, I wish you infinite success, that you enjoy life and realise all your dreams. It was an honour to play with a magician like you.” A move for Arthur would not only put smiles on Liverpool fans faces, but also Firmino’s face it seems.

Perhaps it would be a risk considering the player would be new to the Premier League, it may take time for him to settle in England and he may not live up to the heights of Coutinho for now – but it sure would be a risk worth taking.

Coutinho’s fellow countryman would certainly be a potential option, but the question is, how long would it take for him to live up to that potential?

Three potential replacements Liverpool could sign should Philippe Coutinho join Barcelona this January

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Barcelona are keen to sign the Brazilian and Liverpool will look for a top class replacement should he leave Anfield, writes Sam May.

The transfer saga continues with Coutinho’s future uncertain and the player adamant he has played his last game for the Reds. Liverpool will hope to keep hold of him, but there is no guarantee.

Should the player leave for the Catalan giants, Liverpool will be ready to target his replacement, but who could they go for?

 

Thomas Lemar (AS Monaco)

Liverpool were keen on the Frenchman Lemar in August, and being hopeful a deal would be struck with Monaco, the player had medical staff waiting for him in Paris. Monaco had sold a number of high profile stars that summer, so it seemed Lemar would be joining them out of the exit door. The 22-year-old however, does still want out and Liverpool could come calling once more.

Lemar can play both wide and central, and would be seen as the perfect option. He has possession and pace but not quite as much creativity at Coutinho.

 

Manuel Lanzini (West Ham)

Lanzini would be the perfect option for Coutinho and the fact he has Premier League experience would suit the Reds. The 24-year-old is skilful on the ball and can get between the lines. He has been West Ham’s best performer since his arrival in English football and Tottenham were previously linked with the playmaker last summer. He could improve further under Klopp and alongside Liverpool’s attacking players.

 

Julian Draxler (Paris Saint Germain)

Draxler shone when playing for Wolfsburg, becoming one of Europe’s most inform players, alerting Paris Saint Germain. Now with the French champions, fellow countryman and Reds manager Jürgen Klopp identified the German international last January, as Liverpool eye extra attacking options. Just 12 months on and he is linked yet again with the Reds, having failed to fully launch his career with PSG, completing 90 minutes in just three league games this season. The 24-year-old could play both in the wide and central roles, but his goal scoring would need area for improvement.