Alexis Sanchez explains his pre-match ritual

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Arguably the standout fixture from this weekend's Premier League fixtures is the north London derby.

With Arsenal making a flying start to the campaign and Tottenham still unbeaten, there is a real sense that a win for either side will take on much greater significance than three points.

Alexis Sanchez is likely to have a big say on proceedings and if his promising form of late is anything to go by, Spurs know keeping him quiet would go a long way to picking up a victory.

Eight goals and seven assists so far this season - after being switched to a false 9 - suggests the Chile international could well be the prolific striker Arsene Wenger has been searching for since Robin van Persie departed in 2012.

But what's his secret?

Well for starters, no one can ever criticise Sanchez's work ethic. His willingness to work as hard off the ball as well as on it is one of the reasons why he has become so popular at the Emirates.

And in an interview with The Mirror, the 27-year-old admitted he strives on playing each game as if it could be his last.

“You have to play at 100 per cent in every game,” Sanchez said.

“When you finish playing football nobody will remember you. I play every match as if it were my last and that motivates me to do the best I can every day.”

However, that might not be the only factor behind his success. Many players have set pre-match routines that they must follow in order to feel at their best when the first whistle is blown.

Sanchez is no different but his ritual is certainly a bit more mundane than most.

“No, I am not superstitious. But I do always go on to the pitch with my right foot first and I kiss my dog for good luck," he told DIRECTV, as per The Mirror.

It might not be the most exciting routine but the results speak for themselves.

Most thought Arsenal missed out on their best chance to end their title drought last season, nevertheless, their Chilean star thinks the squad are far more confident this term.

He added: “I am hearing the same but now it depends on the players to be focused on becoming champions, that is our ambition.

“More than hunger, what we were missing last season was the little details that can go against you in a game. Those are the things that mean that you have to be 100 per cent focused.

"To be fresh and ready and to take advantage of the balls when they come. Like we did against Burnley when we won 1-0. These little things helped us to score and the game finished.

“Now I see them (the squad) extra-motivated. They have a hunger to win things.”

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Alexis Sanchez
Premier League
Mesut Özil
Arsene Wenger

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