Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez has insisted he wants to see out the remaining 14 months on his contract, but his comments have also been perceived as an invitation to the likes of Chelsea to make a move.
Opinion is split in the coverage from the British media on Thursday as speculation continues to suggest that the Chilean international could move on from the Emirates.
Sanchez has been in stunning form for the most part this season, scoring 22 goals and providing 18 assists in 38 appearances in all competitions as he has been the leading man for the Gunners.
However, as noted by the Evening Standard, the 28-year-old is currently on a £130,000-a-week deal, and although he has revealed his intention to stay with Arsenal, he is still chasing a better agreement which would significantly increase his salary.
Further, it’s noted that it would take a £50m offer to prise him away from the north London giants if a new contract isn’t signed, as Arsenal surely won’t be keen on seeing him run down his contract and leave for nothing next summer.
“I am happy in London and I hope to finish my contract at Arsenal,” Sanchez, at a press event in Santiago, is quoted as saying by Chilean newspaper Publimetro.
“I like to stay in a city and in a team, but in a team that is a winner, that has a winning mentality.”
As noted above though, his comments haven’t been taken the same way by all publications, with The Telegraph reporting that Sanchez was effectively ‘flirting with Chelsea’.
While he evidently didn’t mention any clubs by name, there is strength to the argument that he was perhaps hinting at others to make a move for his services as he is settled in London and Chelsea would arguably give him the best possible chance of winning silverware currently.
The last thing Arsenal want is another Robin van Persie situation where their best player leaves to join a direct rival, and subsequently helps them win silverware while the Gunners fall further behind. However, the signs aren’t looking good at the moment but things could change if a contract agreement is reached.