Arsenal recorded a 3-1 victory over Bournemouth on Sunday afternoon at the Emirates Stadium. The game marked a return to form of Chilean star Alexis Sanchez, as he bagged a brace against the Cherries.
Sanchez had struggled to make an impact in recent Gunners games, probably affected by fatigue and hampered by his recent injury problem.
Back to form with a bang
For me, Alexis Sanchez is Arsenal’s most influential players and when he is on form there are few better players than the Chilean in the Premier League. Against Bournemouth he looked to be back to his energetic best and was a constant thorn in the Cherries defenders sides.
Not only did he score a brace, but his all-around performance was far better than in recent games. He once again linked up well with Mesut Ozil and it had a big effect on the Gunners attacking players. They looked far more threatening with Sanchez fully-fit and at full pelt.
Maybe a slight dependency on Sanchez
I have no doubts that Sanchez struggling to produce his best form in recent games has had an effect on Arsenal’s attacking play. The absence of Spanish playmaker Santi Cazorla through injury has also hampered Arsenal’s usual free-flowing attacking football.
Maybe Arsenal do depend on Sanchez’s energy and creativity to kick-start all that intricate attacking football. When Sanchez is off his game the likes of Theo Walcott and Mesut Ozil especially look less effective.
Neither seems at their best if Sanchez is not harassing defences and playing nice little one-twos to them. The Gunners are just not the same attacking threat when Sanchez is tired or endures an off-day. Nobody else seems capable of stepping up and being that creative spark if Sanchez is not.
Sanchez vital for the Gunners title hopes
Arsenal are by no means out of the hunt for the Premier League title this season and are currently odds of 8/1 to be crowned champions in May.
With the Gunners sitting fourth in the table and just three points behind league leaders Chelsea the side from north London have to be considered very contenders for the title.
However, their lie squarely at Alexis Sanchez’s feet. The Chilean international has scored eight times this season and produced four assists. If he can keep that form going then no doubt Arsenal will have a good chance of ending their long wait for a top-flight title.
Does Arsenal rely too much on Alexis Sanchez?