Alexis Sanchez left Arsenal last January to join up with Manchester United in a deal which currently makes him the highest paid player in the English Premier League.
But after nine months of playing for one of English football’s most successful teams, Sanchez has embarrassingly found it difficult to replicate the form that made him the toast of fans and suitors alike while he sojourned with the Gunners.
When he scored the winning goal in United’s hard-fought 3-2 victory over Newcastle at Old Trafford two weeks ago, it was the first time he would be scoring a goal for the team in a competitive match since April.
Already, there is talk that the Chilean forward is making plans to leave the club to a team that would guarantee him ample game time after he appears to be frozen out by Jose Mourinho who is said not to be impressed by his goals returns for the club so far.
Hotsportstv.com has however learnt that there is more to the Sanchez’s loss- of- form saga at the famous Theatre of Dreams.
Recent reports alleged that the former Barcelona and Arsenal forward is under a love spell cast by a former girlfriend, Mayte Rodriguez whom he split with recently.
With his wealth, Sanchez,29, was the ultimate playboy who is reputed to have dated some of Chile’s most well-endowed beauties. The tabloids have lost count of the number of glamorous women he had frolicked with, and dumped!
Sanchez who lost a former girlfriend, Valentina Roth, a popular dancer to infidelity early last year did not take long before he got locked in a sizzling romance with Mayte Rodriguez who has now turned out to be his nemesis.
Sanchez had not only impressed with his new lover’s versatility in acting, modelling and her various artistic pursuits, but he was also smitten by her breathtaking beauty and popularity.
Their common love of dogs was an added spa
rk to a romance that was often the toast of the Chilean press.
Popular Chilean journalist, Ale Vale was once reported to have said of Sanchez’s reaction when he first met Rodriguez, ” Alexis was bowled off his feet when they met a while back,”.
For Sanchez who had always controlled the pace of relationships, determining when it would start or end, it was a new experience to fall so helplessly in love with the stunning Rodriguez.
And the consequences have been quite profound.
Sanchez first started to feel the negative influence of his attachment to Rodriguez when he started losing his sharpness in front of goal for the Chilean national team each time he was home for international duty.
Thousands of fans, disturbed by his falling standards had organised a march to protest his repeated poor renditions for his country as Chile’s Russia 2018 World Cup qualification hopes started sliding downhill. He was categorically asked by Chilean fans to dump Rodriguez whom they accused of being a bad influence on his career.
Sanchez had become overweight after sacrificing his strict training regimen on the altar of indulgence and permissiveness of food and wine and nights out with his beau.
Well, Chile, the Copa America champions ended up not qualifying for the FIFA World Cup while Sanchez who had just completed a dream move to Manchester United began experiencing difficulties impressing his new employers with the kind of performances that made him an overwhelming fans favourite at Arsenal.
As if grappling with his form was not enough, he was hit with another bombshell. Rodriguez announced in September she was quitting the relationship.
Although she did not give reasons for the sudden decision to split after barely a year of dating Sanchez, hotsportstv.com learnt that it may not be unconnected with rumours that he had a love- child from a secret relationship.
Even though he had strongly parried the rumours at the time, Rodriguez is said not to have forgiven her philandering boyfriend, bidding her time- the right time- as it were to pay back.
Last September, she finally exacted her pound of flesh, leaving Sanchez in a quandary and further dealing his quest to return to form a mortal blow.
So, these days, the two- time Copa America winner is a shadow of his former self as he goes through games not knowing what to expect.
Unlike in those days under Arsene Wenger when he was a super- regular, playing football to enjoy it, Sanchez is fast sliding into oblivion at Manchester United.
Any wonder then that he desperately seeks a way out? Who will help him? His agent says he is working to get him another club that can give him a chance to rebuild his career. Will that help? Or an appeal be made for his departed girlfriend to return? Maybe that can help. Who knows?