• Premier League

Sanchez form inspired by desire to join Arsenal

ESPN staff
February 18, 2015
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Arsene Wenger believes Alexis Sanchez's desire to move to Arsenal is one of the primary reasons why he has proved to be such a hit during his first season at the club.

Sanchez, 26, joined last summer from Barcelona for a sum reported to be in the region of £30 million. He has gone on to become a vital member of Wenger's side since then, scoring 12 Premier League goals and another six more in cup competitions.

"Alexis Sanchez had a few options and he chose us because he felt that's where he wanted to go," Wenger told Arsenal's official website.

  • Alexis Sanchez to be the top scorer in the Premier League this season, at 16/1 with bet365*
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  • *All odds correct at time of publishing.

"Sometimes a player moves somewhere and it's not the choice that he deeply wanted. In his case, I think he really wanted to join us."

Wenger went on to say that the experience gained in Sanchez's career so far, which has taken in spells in Italy and Spain before his move to England, has helped him to settle so quickly at Arsenal.

"You have to consider the history of a player, and if it is the first move for a player from his country and his family, it can be a sensitive subject," Wenger said.

"If a player has already moved to different countries in his career, it helps. We speak about Alexis Sanchez and he has already played in Italy and Spain.

"Another factor [in helping him settle] is he came into a team that plays in an [attacking] way, where he can express his talent with freedom. It works out well for him and that helps.

"After, another step is that a team welcomes you with the values that you rate and that in some parts of the team, you can feel at home when you need it sometimes. That means there are people inside the squad with a similar culture. For example, we have plenty of Spanish-speaking people and I believe that helps to integrate people well.

"Off the pitch, of course that is sometimes less predictable. You need to find the right housing, to feel comfortable in your daily life, your family need to like it, and your children need to find the right school. You can never predict it will work, but we have someone who looks after the players and he does a marvellous job.

"When all these things fit well, then you have a chance to have a happy player."

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