Manchester United wanted to get the deal for Alexis Sanchez done and dusted by the weekend – meaning they could have the player registered in time to face Burnley in the Premier League. The Chilean needed to seal his move to Old Trafford before midday on Friday to make his United bow against the Clarets on Saturday.
However, Sanchez was spotted at Arsenal’s training ground, perhaps for the last time. As per the Mirror, the 29-year-old did train at the London Colney complex on Thursday but away from the first-team who were getting ready for Saturday’s clash with Crystal Palace.
After Sanchez was pictured leaving Arsenal’s training ground, giving a thumbs up to the photographers as the move to Manchester United looks set to be complete in the coming hours or days. The Chilean superstar has been widely linked with a move to Old Trafford over the past week and agreed to a four-and-a-half-year contract on Wednesday.
Sanchez is in the final six months of his contract at Arsenal with no intention of signing a new deal. Arsene Wenger has accepted the club’s fate and has, therefore, decided to sell his forward this month instead of losing him on a free transfer in the summer.
In exchange, Arsenal are set to receive Henrikh Mkhitaryan for the Chilean superstar. The Armenian was also snapped heading to training on Friday morning. He will also not make his debut for Arsenal this weekend. However, due to transfers being hard enough to sort when there’s only one player involved, let alone two and a swap deal, it seems that it could drag on for some time yet.
Speaking about the deal on Thursday, Wenger said: “Yes it is likely to happen. “But any minute things can break down. That’s how the transfer market is. These things are never guaranteed.”
Sanchez is now just waiting to find out if Mkhitaryan will give the green light on a switch in the other direction to Arsenal, which would trigger his move to Old Trafford.
The move is imminent but it looks like the paperwork won’t be signed today, which means Sanchez won’t be able to make his United debut tomorrow. Otherwise, he could debut for us in next weekend’s FA Cup 4th round tie at Yeovil Town.