Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez made way for Danny Welbeck to lead the line in Monday’s Premier League clash with Crystal Palace, instead operating as a left-winger with license to cut inside on his favoured right foot. While a position the Chilean international has vast experience in, Sanchez has been full of goals since his move to a centre-forward, which raises the question why he’s no longer operating through the middle.
The 28-year-old flashed two early chances off target but faded as the game went on and it was clear being out wide wasn’t helping. Manager Arsene Wenger was applauded by supporters for fixing the side’s deficiencies in attack this season – Sanchez has scored and created 27 goals in 28 Premier League starts– but he’s been oddly moved back wide without vindication from results.
It’s worth noting Sanchez has scored just two goals in his last eight games in all competitions, and just once in the Premier League since early February. His movement and industry made him a nightmare for defenders to contain, but now his return to a left-sided position hampers Arsenal’s threat in the central areas. Arsenal are 1/10 to finish outside of the top-four given the recent dip in form, so would returning Sanchez up front turn things around?