Martin Keown aims fresh dig at ‘mercenary’ Alexis Sanchez ahead of Manchester United debut


Martin Keown aims fresh dig at Alexis Sanchez ahead of Manchester United debut
Alexis Sanchez has been named in Manchester United’s starting lineup (Picture: Getty)

Martin Keown has reiterated his belief that Alexis Sanchez acted like a ‘mercenary’ after he joined Manchester United rather than Manchester City.

City boss Pep Guardiola tried to sign Sanchez last summer and revived his interest in the Chilean earlier in the month as his career at the Emirates was clearly coming to an end.

But City were unhappy with the overall cost of a deal and rivals United took full advantage to sign Sanchez on a staggering four-and-a-half-year deal.

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The 28-year-old is set to make his debut for the Red Devils in Friday evening’s FA Cup clash at Yeovil.

Speaking ahead of the fourth round fixture, former Arsenal and England defender Keown told BBC: ‘It looked like Alexis Sanchez would go to Man City after he decided he was leaving Arsenal.

‘I felt he was going for the money and he was a bit of a mercenary. You could go to United for many reasons but he was being chased by City for 18 months.

Alexis Sanchez in a Manchester United shirt
Sanchez joined United from Arsenal in a record-breaking swap deal (Picture: Getty)

‘For him to go to United, it had to be about the money. I don’t understand why he didn’t go to the best team and Man City are that at the moment.’

Keown voiced a similar opinion last week when he told the Daily Mail: ‘Sanchez has got to be the biggest mercenary in football.

‘Manchester City have wanted to sign Sanchez since the summer and, if no deal is done in January, they will be waiting for him at the end of the season.

‘City would be the natural place for Sanchez to go to develop his football. He has worked with Pep Guardiola before.

? Ladies and gentlemen, please take your seats. Introducing

— Manchester United (@ManUtd) January 22, 2018

‘But for Sanchez, this is clearly not about going to the best team, working with Guardiola and taking his game to another level.’

Sanchez, however, has dismissed his critics since joining United and said: ‘There are people who have spoken with no knowledge of what happens inside the club and cause damage.

‘I must say I always gave 100%, until the last day, when I asked the Mister [Arsène Wenger] to be in the team, because I wanted to [make] a contribution.

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‘I remember today, a conversation I had with Henry, a historic Arsenal player, who changed club for the same reason and today is my turn.

‘Thanks for everything Gunners! All we achieved and the good moments that I gave to the club, I want to dedicate it to the fans, they are the most important. Thanks for every time you sing Alexis Sánchez Baby.’

MORE: Arsene Wenger reveals the signs that suggest Mesut Ozil will extend his Arsenal contracts

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