Arsenal are changing tactics to suit Alexis Sanchez

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Arsene Wenger is still not satisfied with Alexis Sanchez's contribution to the team and has his coaching staff constantly drilling the Chilean over his positional and combination play, reports Goal.

Sanchez has already won the hearts and minds of Arsenal fans since his £35 million summer move from Barcelona. The 25-year-old has scored seven goals in the Premier League, including back-to-back braces against Sunderland and Burnley.

His goalscoring, along with his incessant desire to track back and win the ball is popular on the Emirates terraces, but Wenger and his coaching staff are working hard to eradicate that from his game.

Adapting tactics

While Sanchez's contribution has been appreciated, the French tactician is growingly aware of how much the Chilean's outlandish style warps his team's game plan. As a reuslt, Wenger has opted to change his team around to suit his style.

But the long-term plan is to adapt Sanchez to fit in with the team's playing style. Tracking back may be popular with the fans, but Wenger wants him staying up front, saving his energy to lead counter-attacks. Similarly, Arsenal coaches are also drilling into him a need to pass the ball quicker and be more careful in possession.

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For the time being, Wenger has played Mathieu Flamini and Mikel Arteta together to make up for Sanchez's tendency to give the ball away in dangerous areas. That has allowed Arsenal to be more assured at the back, leading to two successive clean sheets.

The Robin van Persie effect

But Wenger, who recently said that he expects more to come from Arsenal's second most expensive signing, does not want to form the team around one person. Only once has he done that with Robin van Persie. Losing him to Manchester United forced a huge tactical shake up.

"Now his confidence is there and his understanding with his team players is much better." - Arsene Wenger

That is also how Liverpool set up around Luis Suarez last season and Brendan Rodgers' men are suffering as a result. Wenger said there were obvious comparisons between the two players.

Suarez comparison

"The comparison is there, yes," Wenger told the BBC on Saturday. "Both can play on the flanks and down the middle. Both are very quick to close you down when they lose the ball.

"Sanchez is developing very well now. His confidence was not completely there at the start of the season but now it's there and his understanding with his team players is much better."

It boils down to the fact that Arsenal still consider Sanchez a raw player, who could be refined to become even better in the future. No one will be complaining if he can improve on his current form. In fact he could be looking at a Ballon d'Or nomination if he does.

Alexis Sanchez
Arsene Wenger
Premier League

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