Paul Scholes: Alexis Sanchez was only signed by Manchester United to prevent Manchester City move

by Leo Nieboer

Paul Scholes believes Alexis Sanchez was only signed by Manchester United to avoid him joining Manchester City.

The Chilean had for some time been linked with a move to Man City and it looked as if a deal was practically done back in January.

But in a sensational U-turn Man United stepped in, offering bigger wages than City alongside agreeing to send Henrikh Mkhitaryan the other way in a deal which had the football world gripped.

And Scholes, speaking in a recent interview, opined that Sanchez had only been brought in to stop City from further strengthening their team.

“I know he has qualities and has been a good player but I never saw him as a United player,” he said.

“I saw him as a bit selfish, someone who played for himself sometimes. I didn’t think he was a player that we needed, especially for that type of money. How would we be able to get rid of him now when he earns those wages? The signing felt like it happened just to stop Man City signing him.

“It feels like every player who comes into the team struggles. I feel like we could sign Lionel Messi at the moment and he’d struggle in this team.”

The directionless and awkward nature of Sanchez’s time at Old Trafford, like a carrot being pinged around a pin-ball machine, certainly creates the feeling that the Chilean was not signed for any tangible on-pitch, tactical reason. But that is more the fault of his manager, who has continually failed to give Sanchez touches of the ball in and around the box.

What really happened was that City offered Sanchez a deal which his party did not agree on, prompting Pep Guardiola to pull out immediately. United then saw an opportunity and, at a time when Mourinho was dissatisfied with his side’s attackers (namely Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford), grabbed it with both hands.

Sanchez may well come good at Old Trafford but, as things stand, the whole feels like something the club did not think through very well at all.

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