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Arsenal odds to win: 21/10
Alexis Sanchez signing Arsenal could be ultimate for Arsene Wenger. Enthusiasm has been created by a summer recruitment drive where Wenger has spent big to sign Chilean forward Alexis Sanchez, defenders Mathieu Debuchy and Calum Chambers, as well as goalkeeper David Ospina, and it was compelling to hear the Arsenal manager’s description of his new attacker. Wenger said that Alexis will add power, creativity and much quality to their team and they're all looking forward to him joining up with them. Alexis should show his existence more than another addition to Arsenal manager’s obsession with collecting inside-forwards as the Community Shield game at Wembley on Sunday may reveal. It’s not often you would hear both ‘power’ and ‘creativity ’ to describe a footballer but Alexis Sanchez is a true multi-tasking threat. Sanchez final World Cup game was a perfect example of his ambidextrous star. In Chile’s regrettable second-round defeat on penalties to Brazil, he started as a right-sided forward, attempting to sprint in behind the opposition defence. From that position, Alexis scored Chile’s score. But coach Jorge Sampaoli removed Eduardo Vargas after an hour, a similar player to Alexis and put on Mauricio Pinilla, an old-fashioned central striker. Alexis role changed, and he switched from an outside-right position to an inside-left role, collecting the ball deep, linking midfield and attack, looking to play through-balls. In fact, his neat one-two with Pinilla led to the striker thumping against the bar in the dying moments of extra-time. Alexis showed he can play either role -he can be the Thierry Henry, or the Dennis Bergkamp. Power and creativity. Sanches adaptability owes much to the fact he’s played different roles in different types of sides at a young age. He inspired at World Cup 2010 as tricky winger in a very direct Chile side which pressed high up the pitch, but the following season he was voted Serie A’s best player in an entirely different role. His Udinese team played on the counter-attack, and Sanchez was a No 10 playing behind Antonio Di Natale, powering through the centre of the pitch. Then came his transfer to Barcelona. Now, Alexis was again a different player, forced to adapt to a side based around Lionel Messi, told to start wide and make runs in behind the opposition defence - and sometimes used as a No 9. Alexis was often a great attacking threat, but it always felt as if his game was restricted. At Arsenal, Alexis' versatility means he can be used in very different ways. He could play on the right flank, particularly as Theo Walcott waits to return from a serious knee injury, but he’s also an alternative, or an accompaniment, as a centre forward to Olivier Giroud. Olivier Giroud was opposite to Sanchez. Giroud he is tall, strong, good in the air and static with his positioning, moving towards the ball to link play while Alexis is short, quick, a mazy dribbler and extremely direct. They could form a fine partnership should Arsène Wenger use 4-4-2 as an alternative to the usual 4-2-3-1, as happened twice at Wembley in last season’s successful FA Cup run. According to Alexis himself, it’s his style of play at Chile that will be most applicable to his new club. “Arsenal plays very well, which fits my style. That is why I moved here,” he said. Wenger's style of play is the sort of style the Chilean national team has, so therefore I am used to it. Wenger has been a master of changing a player’s role upon their arrival at Arsenal think how Henry was converted into a centre forward, or how Kolo Toure was brought back to become a top-class centre back - and he’ll be delighted by Alexis' all-round skill set, because there’s so much to work with.