Alexis Sanchez reveals why he snubbed Manchester City for Manchester United

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Former Manchester United attacker Alexis Sanchez has revealed that he once shunned Pep Guardiola and Manchester City after he got a call from Jose Mourinho telling him that he could have the iconic number 7 jersey at the Red Army. 

Sanchez played under Pep Guardiola at Barcelona and he described the Manchester City manager as being like his father. 

The pair lifted many major titles in Spain before the Chilean moved to North London to sign for Arsenal in a deal worth £30 million in 2014.

Under the tutelage of Arsenal Wenger, Alexis Sanchez went on to become a very devastating attacker in England with the Gunners. 

Pep Guardiola and Alexis Sanchez at Barcelona
Pep Guardiola and Alexis Sanchez at Barcelona

The 34-year-old scored 80 goals in 166 appearances for Arsenal, before moving to Manchester United in 2018, where things didn’t go according to plan.

Manchester City had tabled an offer of around £70 million to acquire the services of Alexis Sanchez and in a revealing interview with a Santiago-based newspaper, La Tercera he claimed he would have lifted the Champions League with the Cityzens. 

He disclosed that he snubbed the Cityzens after he got a phone call from Jose Mourinho. Alexis Sanchez said: “I was about to go to City, I spoke to Guardiola every day, he told me happy birthday. He was like my dad. He was my dad at Barcelona and he was like my dad at City.

“We talked, we talked every day, he sent me messages. And everything was ready, there was a player who was going to go to Arsenal. 

“Then Wenger tells me you are not leaving because the other player did not want to come and they do not have another.

“Suddenly the cell phone rings. Mourinho tells me: ‘Alexis, here is the seven shirt available for you.” 

Alexis Sanchez eventually signed for Manchester United in a swap deal involving him and AS Roma midfielder Henrikh Mhykitaryan. 

He was put on a fat wage at Manchester United as he was earning £350,000 per week at Old Trafford. He also went on to wear the iconic No 7 jersey at the club. 

Alexis Sanchez in the interview expatiated on the reason for his move, that it wasn’t for monetary reasons, he said: “It wasn’t a money thing, so everyone knows, it was the same with United and City. 

“And he said to me here is the seven, we are playing in the Champions League and we are going to give everything. I wanted to leave at that moment, but I had Guardiola’s word.

“That’s when I said to myself, Chilean footballer playing for Manchester United, something that has never happened. With the seven of Cantona, Beckham, Cristiano Ronaldo and now a Chilean had it, it was a dream.”

Sanchez joined Manchester United with a lot of fanfare

The Chilean arrived Old Trafford with so much fanfare as his deal was announced with a video of him playing a piano.

He was loaned out the following year as he couldn’t produce the goods needed, with the former Arsenal man accumulating 5 goals in 45 appearances for Manchester United before his loan move to Inter Milan. 

Alexis Sanchez at Inter Milan
Alexis Sanchez at Inter Milan

Sanchez returned the next year before signing for Inter Milan where he has been relatively successful, featuring in 109 matches and scoring 29 goals. 

The Marseille forward also stated that he doesn’t feel bad over how the move turned out to be, in spite of spending only two years at the Manchester based club. 

He said: “I don’t regret going to United, Things happen for a reason. I would have liked to have gone to City, yes.

“We would have won the Champions League by now. In the final I would have done something.” 

During his time in Italy, he won the Serie A, Coppa Italia and the Supercoppa Italiana, he joined Marseille on a free transfer after mutually terminating his deal with the Italian side. 

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