Saturday 27 January 2018


The answer to which team got the better deal in the Sanchez Mkhitaryan exchange is simple.


It goes back to the Media’s ability to control the narratives and generate more eyeballs and social media engagements / clickbaits.

More Nonsense. More money for the Media people with many lazy sports journalists who crowd source almost all of their articles from social media postings of lemmings pretending to be in the know.

First off. How do you quantify better deal?

Money gained / saved? Player impact? Trophies won at the end of the player’s contract? How pleased the fans are with the transfer? The manager? What exactly are you measuring?

What are the facts and not some meaningless search for social media engagements?


Arsenal were reported to have valued Alexis at between £30m and £35m. They had accepted (subject to been able to sign a replacement) a £60m bid by Manchester City lodged almost 24 hours before the end of the Summer transfer period. As Arsenal couldn’t sign a replacement, a decision was made to keep him.

There are rumors potentially now supported by the reactions of Arsenal players to Sanchez departure that Alexis was not popular in the dressing room.

Overall for Arsenal and in his career, Alexis Sanchez’s goals stats are phenomenal. However he was part of an Arsenal Team that finished Fifth for the first time in Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal career.

Hi goals stats since he couldn’t join Manchester City in the summer and up until his last game for Arsenal was on a downward spiral. Seven goals, three assists and 38% shooting accuracy in 19 Premier League matches compared with 24 goals and 10 assists in 38 matches the previous season. Source         

His reputation for ball turnover / dispossession are legendary. While many passionately dislike him for this, others give him a pass because they believe he is trying to work some magic.

Since he joined Arsenal, his overall game stats have improved remarkably and shows that those who claim Arsene’s best days are behind him are misguided or just liars. Arsene Wenger improved Alexis Sanchez.

Fast forward to the January transfer window. The player still wants to leave. The numbers he wants cannot be matched by Arsenal. PSG and Bayern couldn’t make the numbers work and so eventually too Man City couldn’t cough up the dosh.


At the start of the January transfer window, Manchester City knew clearly that Arsenal wanted £30m to £35m. Just like in the summer, some smart arse in Man City thought they could low ball Arsenal and wait till the last day of the transfer window. They wanted to pay £20m. How utterly ridiculous and disrespectful?
They thought he was worth £60m the last window, why were they offering a third of his value in the next window?

It was either they didn’t really want him or they thought Arsenal were desperate. I suspect the latter and Man City’s dithering allowed Manchester United come in.   Had Man City coughed up the extra £10m to £15m, Alexis might be their man now since they reportedly already had a player contract agreed with his agent.

Now he is a Manchester United player with rumors that his total package can be something like £600k per week if you include bonus payments. Staggering.

Arsenal effectively got their £35m valuation although not in cash but definitely in a player like Mkhitaryan. If you don’t think he is worth £30m to £35m in today’s market despite all the issues he had with Jose, there is no helping you. Yes he is coming on possibly bigger wages than average squad players but just realize that Arsenal don’t get dicked about in the transfer market.

Arsenal have made a name for not paying over the odds. Whatever they are paying Mkhitaryan he is worth it.

In addition, they get a player very much in the mold of all of Arsene’s successful projects. A Dennis Bergkamp losing his way in Inter Milan, A Thierry Henry who had lost his confidence in Juventus, A Patrick Vieira who was out of sorts at AC Milan, a Mesut Ozil disillusioned with life at Real Madrid.

Arsenal get a player who is urbane, a citizen of the world and a gentleman who speaks six languages. No wonder he couldn’t get along with Jose Mourinho. A player who can start on a clean slate, bond with our growing German contingent and with the rest of his colleagues.

What does Manchester United get in return? A player who has publicly showed his disdain for his teammates. Sulking and throwing tantrums in front of the whole world both when things are going great and when the team is having a bad patch.

It is not as if Alexis Sanchez is going into a Manchester City who are winning absolutely everything except when they play Shaktar Donetsk and pesky Liverpool. He is going to a team who have struggled to win many matches this season. A team well known for their preparedness to win and lose ugly and throw silly tantrums unbefitting of a two year old because their opponents are playing music.

I honestly can’t wait for the looming confrontation between Jose Mourinho and Alexis Sanchez. And it will come. Mark my word.

If Alexis has no respect for Giroud, no way he is going to think highly of Romelu ‘Touch of a Bricklayer’ Lukaku or the midgets in the Manchester United dressing room.

In addition, Manchester United get a player who has already torn up their wage structure. Forget all the protestations about bonus payments etc. The top line figure is what other players like Pogba et al will be aiming for and they already are. 

Manchester United protesting that the overall deal is what justifies them paying him £600k per week doesn’t wash with me and shouldn’t wash with any right thinking person.

Paying a 29-year-old £600k on a 234 weeks contract till he is 33 or 34 on top of the £35m for Mkhitaryan makes it a total shell out of £175m for Alexis Sanchez if all the bonuses and image rates milestones are met. Plus rumored payments of £15m to Alexis’ agent and a pay off to Mkhitaryan and his agent and it is conceivable that the cost of the transfer can easily top £200m all in.

If United had waited till May, they could have saved £35m straightaway and the payments to Mkhitaryan and his agent. There is no guarantee anybody could have matched them on the wages anyway.

All of that is now spilled milk. However who got the better deal will be determined ultimately by the end result. Will both United & Arsenal play better because of Sanchez’ departure? I will say yes.

Will Manchester United win the big trophies they crave because of Alexis Sanchez? I will stick my neck out and say not a single chance. As long as the ‘money no object’ guys in blue are in the Emptyhad and the referees remain in their pockets, Mourinho is not winning the Premier League. Similarly in Europe, I expect them to go out in the next round or to be massacred if they get to the quarterfinals. It won change next season either.

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