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Alexis Sanchez is fed up of being Superman – it’s time he joined his own kind at Manchester City

Alexis Sanchez is fed up of being Superman – it’s time he joined his own kind at Manchester City

13/01/2018 at 03:27Updated 13/01/2018 at 03:35

Alexis Sanchez has a decision to make: Manchester City or Manchester United? But for Paul Parker, there’s a clear winner…

Right now, Alexis Sanchez will be asking himself where his medals are going to come from. He wants to take something back to Chile when he retires… and becomes their president!

You might think his behaviour this season has been petulant, selfish, arrogant; but to me that suggests he’s a frustrated winner who is desperate for trophies. It’s not just about money for him.

Sanchez appears to have two possible destinations: Manchester City and Manchester United. At the former he’s guaranteed quick success; at the latter he has the chance to be the game-changer and hero. Until he became a contract rebel at Arsenal, it looked like he thrived as the star man – working extra hard to get the ball and make things happen.

Maybe he’s had enough of that. Sanchez wants to be around players who are as good as him, maybe even some that he believes are better than him. As good as it is being Superman, it’s time he fitted into a team with a few Supermen already there. That’s why his quickest route to medals is at City.

Alexis Sánchez, Raheem Sterling

Alexis Sánchez, Raheem SterlingGetty Images

Sure, United are a big draw. But which manager would Sanchez rather play under: Jose Mourinho or Pep Guardiola? Guardiola would play to his strengths, with everything in-and-around his feet, while he would got many more chances to score.

Guardiola is already looking at next season. He’s obviously aware of stories linking Sergio Aguero with a move away from the Etihad this summer. Why not replace a centre-forward – a player that rarely fits Guardiola’s system – with a complete forward?

Even if Aguero doesn’t move on in the summer, I don’t see City’s attacking players worrying about Sanchez’s arrival. It’s such an easy cliché to say Raheem Sterling, Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus and Co. will be upset by the new arrival. But believe me, top players will look at it positively. They’ll be thinking: ‘we’re going to be stronger, create more opportunities, we’re going to score more goals’.

Anyway, Guardiola likes continuity, making just the odd change. I doubt he gets too many players knocking on his door because they’re all enjoying what is going on. No one is going to want to become the bad apple in the barrel.

When I won the Premier League with United in 1992-93, we had a great team. Then Roy Keane suddenly turned up in pre-season. Where did that leave Bryan Robson, Brian McClair and Paul Ince? In a Double-winning team, that’s where. It made us even better.

So no Sanchez... but could Chicharito and Vardy help United?

Javier Hernandez, Alexis Sanchez, Jamie Vardy

Javier Hernandez, Alexis Sanchez, Jamie VardyEurosport

Chicharito and Jamie Vardy aren’t ‘Jose Mourinho’ centre-forwards. Mourinho loves a big lump as a target man – à la Romelu Lukaku and Zlatan Ibrahimovic – not players who thrive on poaching and runs in behind. They just wouldn’t fit in the current regime.

Is Chicharito a player who would track back? Does Vardy offer anything different to Marcus Rashford or Anthony Martial? It doesn’t make sense. It’s inevitable that United are being linked with everyone, especially given Mourinho has supposedly said he wants to spend money in January.

But those two? They just don’t fit the list.

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