Alexis Sánchez was not at his world-class best against Manchester United, but showed flashes of individual brilliance during our 2-0 victory on Sunday.
Up against a determined Axel Tuanzebe on the teenager’s Premier League debut, it was never going to be an easy task for the Chilean to overcome. Tuanzebe’s acceleration and power coupled with Alexis’ small but agile frame meant it was an intriguing battle on the flank.
Alexis galloped down the wing with mixed success. Being dispossessed on six occasions throughout the 90 minutes evidently wasn’t enough to stop him continually being a nuisance whenever Arsenal had the ball in midfield.
It was his passing in and around the final third which he excelled at. Although Alexis’s decision-making needs improvement, he used spatial awareness and showed good composure to feed team-mates with inviting passes as they edged towards David de Gea’s goal.
Of his nine attempted long through balls, six were successful.
His pass accuracy percentage was 78.3%, his best since our 3-0 win over West Ham (81.1%).
Özil (18), Gibbs, and Monreal (both 11) were the players heavily involved in providing him much of the ball. Although you could see he expected better decision-making from Aaron Ramsey in the first 45, Alexis’ overall influence reduced after the two goals were scored – there was no need to charge forward so regularly anymore, instead focusing on defending the lead.