Former Arsenal defender Martin Keown has slammed Alexis Sanchez over his potential move to Manchester United and has labelled the Chile international football’s biggest mercenary.
Speaking to the Daily Mail the former England international said:
“Sanchez has got to be the biggest mercenary in football,”
“Manchester City have wanted to sign Sanchez since the summer and, if no deal is done in January, they will be waiting for him at the end of the season.
“City would be the natural place for Sanchez to go to develop his football. He has worked with Pep Guardiola before.
“But for Sanchez, this is clearly not about going to the best team, working with Guardiola and taking his game to another level.
“He has probably thought that he will not get a better offer if he waits until the summer, so he might as well take the best deal on offer now. It has been all about the money.”
Manchester City, of course looked dead certs to sign Sanchez either this month or in the summer, up until just a few days ago. However, Manchester United then swooped in with the offer of superior personal terms for the player, and sweetened the deal from an Arsenal perspective by offering Armenian playmaker Henrikh Mkhitaryan in part exchange.
City subsequently pulled out of the deal due to concerns over the level of finances involved for a player with only six months left on his contract.
Although Keown certainly has a point that money is a factor in the Sanchez deal, he does leave out the fact during the players one year under Guardiola at the Nou Camp he only actually played 20 games, as he struggled to fit into the Man City coaches tactical approach.
Also, while the Citizens are clearly the superior team in Manchester at the moment, United are hardly a small club and have shown over the last couple of years that they are determined to spend whatever it takes to recruit world-class players to regain their place as the dominate club in English football.
In fact, it was only a few years ago that City had not won a trophy for 40 years, yet they managed to sign up some of the best players in the world, so by the same token you could call most of the City squad a bunch of mercenaries.