With Manchester City set to face Crystal Palace on Sunday, is it fair for Arsenal fans to assume that Alexis Sanchez’s superb showing at Selhurst Park was for Pep Guardiola’s benefit?

While Alexis chased down every ball against Palace on Thursday evening, put through pass-after-pass for Mesut Ozil and scored a brace, Gooners couldn’t help but joke that the 29-year-old was clearly aware the January transfer window is just days away.

However, it became even more blatant that the forward’s display wasn’t for our benefit after we realised that Pep Guardiola was almost definitely watching that match.

City face Palace themselves on Sunday, which means that someone – most likely the Chilean’s agent – would have given Alexis a nudge that Pep would have been keeping an eye on the match in order to suss out his tactics for the weekend.

(BEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images)

Some may call me cynical. However, even City fans remarked on how the forward put in his best performance of the season by far at Selhurst Park.

Until Thursday, Alexis had been incredibly wasteful, looked fed up and failed to replicate his form from last term when he netted 30 goals.

If there were some Arsenal fans who believed that Alexis was just in a run of bad form, along with the rest of the team, I’m sure there minds have been changed now.

He IS still world class and he CAN still pull out a mind-blowing performance whenever he wants. He just doesn’t want to anymore. At least not for Arsenal.

But yeah, totally a professional who just wants to play football, right?

Obviously, there are other explanations as to why Alexis suddenly remembered how to play football.

Perhaps he had eaten his Weetabix that morning. Maybe he’d had a nice rest over Christmas. He might have even suddenly found his mojo. These are all possible. But probable?