Chilean veteran Alexis Sánchez has been largely forgotten on the elite stage, but his matchwinner against Juventus on Wednesday night was a timely reminder that there’s still life left in the old dog.
The Nerazzurri’s triumph over Juve in the Supercoppa Italiana added yet another winner’s medal to Sánchez’s impressive collection, and it was the 33-year-old who struck the decisive blow in time added after the 120th minute.
It’s not the first time in his career that Alexis Sánchez has come up with a telling contribution on a big occasion though. Sánchez scored a screamer from thirty yards that thundered in off the underside of the crossbar in a 4-0 mauling of Aston Villa in the 2015 FA Cup final. It wasn’t a decisive strike, but it was certainly the outstanding moment of individual brilliance on the day.
Sánchez got himself on the score sheet again in the 2017 FA Cup final, grabbing the first goal of the game and earning the title of Man of the Match in a 2-1 win over Chelsea. His move to Man United didn’t go well, but Sánchez’s reputation at Arsenal was one of a man who always produced the goods when it mattered and that reputation is firmly intact. 80 goals & 45 assists from 166 Gunners appearances in all competitions is an elite output.
🌍 Copa América hero: 2015 & 2016
Sánchez displayed nerves of steel with a cheeky and, crucially, decisive chipped penalty down the middle to secure Copa América glory for Chile in 2015 against Argentina in Chile’s capital city, Santiago.
Gol de Alexis Sánchez a Argentina (Copa América 2015) pic.twitter.com/Rn0CpcCm3n
— Fútbol de Antes (@futboldeantescl) March 29, 2020
Sánchez was there again in 2016 in an ill-tempered final as his team again got the better of another star-studded Argentina side to put the gloss on a truly Golden Era for Chilean footballing history. With 144 caps and 47 goals for La Roja, this is a man who is undoubtedly one of the finest and most iconic footballers in their history. They’ve only ever won two major titles, and Alexis was a central figure in both successes.
🇮🇹 Sánchez vs Salernitana
Back to the present day now. Inter’s recent demolition of Salernitana in Serie A showcased some of Sánchez’s finest attributes as a creative wide attacker who’s devastating on the counter-attack. This wasn’t a big game, necessarily, but it was proof that Sánchez is still a highly effective weapon at the top level.
— Follow @FCIMComps (@Inter19z) December 19, 2021
With plenty of big games on the horizon for the defending champions of Italy, Inter boss Simone Inzaghi will need to lean heavily on his reinvigorated veteran Chilean, especially in games when Inter has less of the ball than their opponents.
🏔 Inter’s key fixtures on the horizon
All sorts of mouthwatering key battles in there, and you can guarantee that the feisty and legendary Alexis Sánchez will be playing a pivotal role.