Alexis Sanchez has been “unlucky” during a forgettable loan spell at Inter says Samuel Eto’o, who considers the Chilean to possess the “different skills” that will allow him to shine at San Siro.
Antonio Conte bought into that ability when agreeing a season-long loan with Manchester United. Sanchez had flopped at Old Trafford on the back of a move from Arsenal in January 2018, but his ability was never in doubt.
Having previously thrived in Italy with Udinese, and at La Liga giants Barcelona, the South American was offered a clean slate by the Nerazzurri.
He has, however, struggled to find a spark, with the problems he encountered in Manchester having followed him to Milan. Form and fitness have continued to hold the 31-year-old back, with niggling injuries preventing him from making the desired impact.
Eto’o is, however, convinced that Sanchez can star for Inter when Serie A resumes – while an extension to his loan has also mooted with there no obvious role for him back in England.
“Alexis has been unlucky this season because of that injury,” former Inter striker Eto’o told Chilean outlet CDF Noticias. “But the quality he has is not up for discussion.
“He is a player who can make a difference at all times. He is a different attacker, with his movement, and he is lethal one-on-one.
“It’s normal that it takes take for him to get back to his best. He arrived at Inter following a period without playing much at United.
“He has different skills, someone like him is always comfortable at a club like Inter.”
Eto’o is not the first to suggest that Inter should look at keeping Sanchez around, despite his troubles in the 2019-20 campaign. Ruben Sosa also believes that it is worth Conte and co persisting with a player who is proven at the very highest level.
He has told La Cuarta: “I was with him in the hotel where he lived in Milan. For me he’s a great player, with a long career, especially with his national team, he’s very respected.
“He hasn’t been given the right time, he can’t play so little, he needs to stay on the pitch for several games, for ninety minutes. He needs time to go back to be the player he is. He needs two games to gain confidence, but he needs to do it whilst starting and playing the full game.
“I’d keep Alexis for another year at Inter. He’s a goal scorer, physically he’s very well and still has a lot to give. He’s a guy who has scored a lot of goals and will continue to do so.”