Jose Mourinho Blames Alexis Sanchez Struggles on Midseason Arrival

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Thus far, the Alexis Sanchez and Henrikh Mkhitaryan swap deal between Manchester United and Arsenal hasn’t worked out for anybody involved. Sanchez, who scored 24 goals last season in Premier League play (30 across all competitions,) has just one in his first eight appearances in a United shirt.

What’s going wrong? Why hasn’t this worked out so far? According to manager Jose Mourinho, the issue partially revolves around the point of the season in which the Chilean arrived.

alexis sanchez

“What is wrong is that he came at the worst moment of the season, in the winter market. That’s why I don’t like the winter market very much,” Mourinho told his news conference on Friday (video available at this link).

“I think this was a chance that we didn’t want to lose and we made, and for sure next season will be better for him, but of course he is learning how to play with us and we are learning how to get the best out of him.”

It’s possible that Sanchez hasn’t really settled on his position yet with his new club, and that could be another reason for why he’s been ineffective at Old Trafford thus far. Romelu Lukaku plays center forward (Alexis’ position at Arsenal), so Mourinho has been using his January arrival out on the wing instead.

“That’s something that we can develop and we’re going to develop with time, with experience and living these experiences together,” Mourinho responded when queried about where Alexis Sanchez best belongs on the pitch.

“I consider that a huge potential to be developed.”

There would be no time like today, against arch-rival Liverpool, for Sanchez to finally make more of an impression.

alexis sanchez

Mourinho added that Sanchez certainly has the correct frame of mind in order to get this right:

“When he makes mistakes he tries to compensate immediately the mistakes with fantastic spirit, with a great transition to try and win back the ball. We are very happy.”

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for the Washington Times, NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, currently contributes regularly to WGN CLTV and the Tribune company’s blogging community Chicago Now.

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