Carl Jenkinson praises Alexis Sanchez for his underrated hidden quality

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Alexis Sanchez's main qualities are well known. The Chilean can score, create, run defenders ragged and chase down every ball regardless of whether it's a lost cause or not.

The Chilean has been in superb form again this season, notching eight goals for the Gunners in the 13 Premier League games he's featured in and has particularly excelled in a central role so far.

His new duties through the middle has displaced regular striker Olivier Giroud of his spot in the starting XI, and moving him away from wide areas would lead one to believe that he wouldn't be able to track back and help out his defence quite as much.

However, full-back Carl Jenkinson has paid tribute to the 27-year-old and the good work he does in protecting his defenders.

The England international has recently found his way back into the side thanks to an injury to regular right-back Hector Bellerin, and has paid tribute to Sanchez's work rate now that he is in a position to feel the benefits of it once again.

“It’s a pleasure to play behind a player like that. On the ball he’s fantastic and people know what he offers and what he can bring, and just to see his work-rate is great," Jenkinson said as per Squawka.

“People underestimate how hard he works sometimes because people always look at what he can do with the ball, but his work-rate is exceptional.

“That’s always nice to have in front of you as a full back, to have that protection. With Alexis, he helps you out defensively as well as and when he can.

“It was a pleasure to play with him as I haven’t played with him before. It’s been Theo before but it’s a pleasure to play with whoever’s in front.”

Back in the fold?

Jenkinson surprisingly survived being shown the door by Arsene Wenger over the summer, having just spent the past two seasons on loan at West Ham.

Bellerin's injury will keep him out until December, and Mathieu Debuchy was forced to pull out of the recent meeting with Bournemouth because of a hamstring problem, meaning Jenkinson may get the chance to prove his worth to Wenger.

However, he has already been exposed several times since making his way back into the fold and the fact that usual centre-back Gabriel replaced Debuchy against Bournemouth may give everyone an indication of Wenger's thinking.

If Jenkinson can't make the most of his opportunity, though, the January transfer window is just around the corner and could spell the end of his tenure at the Emirates.

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Alexis Sanchez
Hector Bellerin
Premier League
Mesut Özil
UEFA Champions League

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