Wenger hails 'exceptional' Alexis Sanchez as Arsenal beat Burnley

The Chile international scored a brace as the Gunners' pressure told in a fine second-half display against the Cherries, with his manager praising his "fighting" spirit in attack
Arsene Wenger has hailed Alexis Sanchez's "exceptional" display as the Arsenal forward bagged a brace to help secure a 3-0 Premier League victory over Burnley on Saturday.

The Gunners had been held to a goalless first half by Sean Dyche's side at the Emirates, but the Chile international made the breakthrough with a fine header in the 70th minute.

Calum Chambers added a second quickly after before Alexis netted his second in injury time, and Wenger believes the summer signing from Barcelona is excelling under the pressure of justifying his £31.8 million transfer fee.

"[Alexis] was top, it was a top performance," he told Sky Sports after the game. "We had a few top performances in the team today but he scored a very important goal."

Asked whether Arsenal are becoming over-reliant on Alexis, Wenger responded: "Listen, he is quality, exceptional, he takes responsibility. He goes at people and fights. He can give a final ball and score; that's what you want from great players."

The Gunners were made to wait for their breakthrough and Wenger - who compared Alexis to Barcelona forward Luis Suarez on Friday - praised his side's resilience as they recorded their first back-to-back league wins of the season.

"We showed patience, quality and concentration," he said. "We had plenty of shots, crosses, but it was important not to concede a goal and we did well.

"We have two clean sheets (in a row), we are more stable defensively and therefore it's easier to win games."

Theo Walcott made his return from the bench for Arsenal, after being out for nine months with a cruciate knee ligament injury, and his manager is relieved the England international is finally back in action.

"It gives him the confidence to play again," he added. "When you get him slowly back I think soon he will come back to his best."

Burnley boss Dyche was far from despondent in defeat, saying that his side are operating at a lower level than Wenger's men.

"We have played six out of the top ten so far and with all due respect to ourselves, we are not ready for six out of the top ten," he said.

"We are ready for a different market and that’s not it today, but it’s important that we understand it, we learn from it and we improve from it.

"It's a very high state of learning that I am in as a young manager and a very high state of learning that the players are in, and we have to learn quickly.

"But there has to be a reality to our journey and that's beyond our reality at the moment."