Arsenal ran riot with goals as they thrash Hull City 4-1 in Saturday’s game but amid the excitement that comes with a 3-point win, coach Arsene Wenger says he’s yet to understand why Alexis Sanchez broke the rules by taking a penalty instead of Santi Cazorla.
Image: Alexis Sanchez
Sanchez scored a brace in the match together with his teammates – Theo Walcott and Granit Xhaka, whose names were also recorded on the scoresheet.
Though the talented Chilean forward scored twice at the KCOM Stadium, his efforts to push Arsenal among the English Premier Leagues top three was almost marred with the hasty penalty miss.
Arsenal’s regular penalty taker looked on in surprise as Sanchez stepped up to the task, after Hull defender Jake Livermore was sent off for committing a foul within the 18-yard box.
Unfortunately, the Chilean who was probably aiming for a hat trick, forgot he was also making an erratic decision which could backfire, and of course, it did.
Wenger spoke in a post-match interview about Arsenal’s second penalty miss, out of their four attempts since the 2016/17 season kicked off.
The coach said: “I have to check that but I think Santi was at the head of the list.”
Though the 66-year-old tactician claimed there could have been a mix-up on the roles, he carefully avoided any criticisms on his players–especially Sanchez. In his words: “We have three players (takers). Did he not want to, did he (Cazorla) tell Sanchez? I don’t know.”
Wenger intelligently summarized the unfortunate and heartbreaking penalty kick by adding: “As a manager, you ideally want all the things to happen in the way you decide, but we don’t live in an ideal world. The keeper made a good save.”
Meanwhile, Alexis Sanchez seem to have earned himself a new name among Arsenal fans. By missing his first two penalties for club. The Chilean has now become the first Gunner to break the record among the club’s history makers.
Reports confirm the player who already has six goals in five games, rarely takes penalties. So it’s a mystery whether he made the baffling choice out of “selfishness” or “courage”.
2 – Alexis Sanchez is the only Arsenal player to take more than one PL penalty and not score one. Fluffed.— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) September 17, 2016
Our two best players at the club in Sanchez and Özil are our two worst penalty takers..weird— Arsenal (@ffarsenalfc) September 17, 2016
Sanchez’s penalty missed… I dont know why Cazorla doesnt command it. Too nice.— Arsenal (@_23Football) September 17, 2016
Sanchez has a contract at the Emirates which ends in 2018.
As the former Barcelona star is yet to sign an extension, Sunday Express reported that Pep Guardiola is planning a swoop on the Arsenal ace.
The report adds that Arsenal have rejected demands from Sanchez to void a clause in his contract extension so he could leave the Emirates.
However, negotiations have been put on hold until the deadlock is broken for the Chilean who considers it necessary to make a switch, if Arsenal can’t win major trophies in this 2016/17 season. The Gunners managed a point from their first two games this season.
Arsenal’s latest win against Hull City makes it a third consecutive win since last December, a feat that shows the club is getting their rhythm back.
Image: Arsene Wenger
Wenger said in his post-match conference: “We had a big shock in our first game and I said straight away we faced a mental test to see how we responded to that, and I think we have responded well.
“We were not ready physically at the start of the season, but this was a convincing win.”