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Arsenal legend Robert Pires has hit out at claims by fellow Arsenal legend Martin Keown that Alexis Sanchez is a mercenary for moving to Manchester United, according to the Daily Star.
Alexis Sanchez completed a move to Manchester United yesterday, which saw Henrikh Mhkitaryan move to Arsenal in a straight swap agreement between the two clubs.
He had turned down offers from Man City and Arsenal to sign a deal with United worth around £450,000 a week, prompting the former Arsenal defender to call him “the biggest mercenary in football”.
Pires however does not share Keown assertion and believes the Chilean wanted to stay at the Emirates.
“That’s football, and if City does not want Sanchez anymore, it’s their problem.
“And if United wants him and is willing to spend a lot of money, good for him.
“But for me, Alexis wanted to stay at Arsenal. I have not talked to him, but what I see, what I smell, is that he was very good in London, very good in Arsenal.
“What Alexis wanted was for Arsenal to spend money on other players.”
“Alexis reached a level that people like a lot,” added the Frenchman. “What the English want to see is a player fighting. That’s why people are in love with him.
“You can lose one, two, three, four balls, but that happens to everyone, to Cristiano and Messi. That the people in the stands see it. He is always making an effort to recover the ball.
“He has always given his body, his blood, to the team. He is a winner. And it’s what he wants.
“When he signed for Arsenal, he told me: “I’m here to win titles.” And I like that attitude.
“People will understand that he was very important for the club.”
Do you think Alexis Sanchez is a mercenary or not? Drop your comments below.