Why Alexis Sanchez must not play in the North London derby

by Mark Bassey

In his Friday press conference ahead of this weekend’s North London derby, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger hinted that Alexis Sanchez, could feature against their bitter rivals.

“He wants to play, of course, he’s very keen, he feels he can defy the medical people because he is so keen to play that he thinks he can get over strains.

“I don’t know yet, I need medical advice on that, and I need as well to see what he can do in training.”

Sanchez was missing for the Gunners last weekend, as they thumped Aston Villa 5-0 at the Emirates. But from what we know about these derbies, it is not one for half fit players.

Wenger seemed to realize that, as he quickly added: “We have enough offensive options, we are not short. I think we have enough offensive power, if all of us perform individually and collectively, we can get above that.’

The Chilean forward should not be risked. Yes, he brings that x-factor to the Gunners squad, but this is one match that requires full intensity and guts. Playing Alexis might damage his hamstring more and Wenger might have to do without him for key fixtures.

The derby is not a do-or-die affair.

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