Alexis Sanchez has confirmed his desire to leave Arsenal this summer, as he seeks to join a club who are competing in the UEFA Champions League.
The Chile international grew increasingly frustrated last season as the Gunners once more failed to mount a bid for the title, a matter which became so grave they ended the season outside of the top-four for the first time since 1995-96 meaning they will not sit at the top table in Europe this season.
Instead, they will compete in the UEFA Europa League, a competition which gave Manchester United much joy last season but offers little consolation to Arsenal this. And this point has been hammered home by Sanchez’s confirmation that he will seek an exit from the Emirates Stadium this summer.
“I want to play in the Champions League,” he told reporters. “The decision isn’t down to me, I need to wait for Arsenal. I’ve made my decision, now I wait for Arsenal’s reply. The idea is to play in and win the Champions League. It is something that I have dreamed about it since I was little.”
Sanchez is in the final 12 months of his contract, meaning if he doesn’t agree terms on a deal he will be able to leave for nothing this time next year. But despite the potential financial loss this could result in for the Gunners, Arsene Wenger is still keen to rely on the forward in the coming campaign.
But the 28-year-old is now expected to push for a transfer before the big kick-off in August, and his preferred choice is thought to be Manchester City where he would link-up with his former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola – however, the Gunners are hugely reluctant to sanction such a move.
Wenger has lost a number of first team players to the Etihad Stadium in recent years, such as Samir Nasri, Bacary Sagna and Emmanuel Adebayor, but none of the standing of Sanchez. Arsenal will, if it comes to it, seek a buyer from overseas where the Chilean has no shortage of admirers.