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Fit for Man Utd? Boss provides injury update on Alexis Sanchez
Chile boss Juan Antonio Pizzi has given an update on the fitness of Alexis Sanchez and insists the Arsenal attacker is available for selection despite concerns over his hamstring injury.
Sanchez was ruled out of Chile’s World Cup qualifier with Colombia last Thursday after suffering a ‘low grade’ hamstring strain in training at the start of last week.
Arsene Wenger was understandably concerned about the welfare of his star striker and called on Chile to allow Arsenal’s medical team to see his scan results amid reports that Alexis had a significant tear.
It’s not known whether that request was granted but Sanchez was snapped in training with the Chile national team on Sunday afternoon but worryingly he was sporting a heavy bandage on his injured hamstring.
Now, Chile boss Juan Antonio Pizzi has told reporters that Alexis is fit and available for selection for their crucial qualifier against Uruguay on Tuesday night and he insists he would never risk a player who wasn’t completely match fit.
Pizzi is quoted as saying by the Mirror:
“Sanchez was not ready for the game in Colombia, but we knew the injury was a small one and we could have him for this match,”
“The three of them (Sanchez, Vidal and Bravo) are available to me for tomorrow.”
“It’s not that he [Sanchez] hasn’t trained, he’s trained every day, even when we were in Colombia he did a different kind of work. Yesterday he took part in full training.”
“At no time have we received pressure from any club. My stance is that I will never use a player who is not fit or capable of playing,”
“All of the clubs can remain calm, we are very respectful of our players. The health of our players is paramount, we will never force any player who has not got the medical all-clear.”
I’m sure I’m not the only one who wants to call bullsh*t on this one as Chile have regularly played Alexis when he wasn’t 100% fit and I’m in no doubt they’ll do the same thing tomorrow night.
Sanchez never wants to miss any game and will be ready to put himself on the line for his country, even if it means risking aggravating the injury even further, and Chile will take full advantage of this.
I’m certain Sanchez will start against Uruguay, and we just need to pray that he comes through the game without making his hamstring any worse.
As for the Man Utd game on Saturday, we’ll have to assess things on Wednesday after the Chile game but I personally think it would be foolish of Wenger to start him at Old Trafford if he plays a full part for his country.
Not only do we have his hamstring to worry about, but Alexis will only arrive back in London on Thursday and we play on Saturday lunchtime so he’ll be fatigued as well from his long-haul trip from South America.
It will be a big blow if Sanchez isn’t able to start at the weekend but better for him to miss one game than six weeks.