You will not believe what Solskjaer compared Manchester United star to – Possible Line up For Man u Vs Chelsea
Alexis Sanchez has had to endure some unfavourable comparisons during his wretched Manchester United career, and on the eve of Monday’s FA Cup fifth-round clash at Chelsea he was likened to a bottle of ketchup by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
United’s caretaker boss was trying to be positive in his colourful analogy, but it felt somehow appropriate for a player who has failed to cut the mustard in 13 months at Old Trafford. Jose Mourinho said we wouldn’t see the best of Sanchez until this season after his mid-winter move from Arsenal last January, but, if anything, he has been even more disappointing this term. He has scored just twice in 19 appearances, too many of which have come off the bench for a player earning £350,000 a week.
On Monday the 30-year-old winger is expected to be given another opportunity to start in the absence of Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard. Solskjaer admits there is only so much he can do to help Sanchez improve. But he believes in the player’s talent and insists that once another goal comes, many more will follow.
‘It’s one of those things,’ said Solskjaer, smacking one hand against the other. ‘You know that bottle of ketchup when it never comes, but when it suddenly comes there’s loads! I think he’s a very good player. He’s very talented, but of course there’s only so many things you can sit down and talk about and tweak. If he could just get that goal I’m sure that would release his confidence. That’s what it’s about when you go through periods when you don’t perform up to your standard because we know there is a very, very good player there. He’s a man of 30 but he can still play for many, many years. I’ve been here for two months with him and he’s been injured for the first part of it, so it’s unfair to just expect him to be at the top straight away. I’m sure we’ll see the best of him before the end of the season.’
Solskjaer is relying on Sanchez after Martial and Lingard were injured in the Champions League defeat by Paris-Saint Germain. He pointed out that Sanchez and Romelu Lukaku led the attack when United won 3-1 at Arsenal in the last round and he is hoping for another big performance at Stamford Bridge.
‘You need the players to step up now and you expect that at Manchester United at the end of the season,’ he added. ‘They have had this little setback with the PSG game, maybe a reality check. Their pride has been hurt, but I’m sure they’ll bounce back. We beat Arsenal in the last round without Anthony and Rashy (Marcus Rashford), and now we’re without Anthony and Jesse. I’m sure we’ll conjure up something.’
Sanchez is fit to play despite also picking up a knock in the PSG game. The former Barcelona and Arsenal forward confirmed that he suffered a dead leg after colliding with a linesman while warming up on the touchline. ‘I went back to the dugout and said to Sergio Romero, “I’ve just been whacked and I’m about to go on”. I’ve got bruising but that’s not an excuse for not being on my game in the way that I normally am. I think a player like me has to show it right now. There is no time to lose, nothing,’ said Sanchez
EPL: Chelsea finally tell Real Madrid how much to pay for Hazard
Real Madrid will have to pay a huge amount to sign forward, Eden Hazard, away from Premier League giants, Chelsea this summer.
The Spanish giants are eyeing Hazard as a replacement for Cristiano Ronaldo, who after nine years, left the Santiago Bernabeu for Juventus in an £88million deal last summer.
According to Belgian outlet, HLN, Chelsea wants at least £98.5million for Hazard after rejecting Real Madrid’s opening offer for the 28-year-old.
Hazard is a huge admirer of Zidane as a coach and named the French legend as his idol growing up.
The Belgium international has so far refused to sign a new long-term deal with Chelsea as he enters the final 12 months of his current contract at Stamford Bridge.
FA Cup semi-final fixtures revealed [See full draw]
Manchester City will play Brighton and Hove Albion in the semi-final of the FA Cup.
City came from two goals down to defeat Swansea City in the quarter-final on Saturday, while Brighton needed extra time to see off Millwall today.
Watford face Wolverhampton Wanderers, who eliminated Manchester United yesterday.
The games will take place over the weekend of April 6.
Both fixtures will be played at Wembley Stadium.
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