Chilean press blame Arsenal duo for Alexis Sanchez's goal drought

Alexis Sanchez Arsenal jacket

The presence of Mesut Ozil and Olivier Giroud in the Arsenal line-up is having an adverse effect on Alexis Sanchez, according to the Chilean media.

Chilean media outlets El Mercurio and La Tereca have claimed that the return of Mesut Ozil and Olivier Giroud has prevented Alexis Sanchez from replicating his best form for Arsenal.

Sanchez, 26, had an impressive start to life in north London following a £35 million summer move from Barcelona, netting 18 goals in his first 31 appearances across all competitions, while also adding nine assists.

The Chilean forward hasn’t scored since grabbing a brace in the 3-0 home win over Stoke on January 11, however, and was one again left frustrated on Wednesday night after failing to find the back of the net for the six-successive game in the disappointing 3-1 Champions League round of 16 first-leg defeat to Monaco at the Emirates Stadium.

With his goal drought coinciding with the return of Ozil from a knee problem, as well as an increased role for Giroud following the French striker’s comeback from a broken ankle, both newspapers have suggested that the pair’s presence in the line-up is hampering Sanchez’s effectiveness.

El Mercurio said following the Monaco loss: "Alexis played the full 90 minutes without too much shine. He started on the left side, then went to the right and to the centre of the attack before finishing as the number 10. He was incisive but, as it happened since the start of 2015, coinciding with a knee injury and the return to action of Ozil, who is overshadowing him, he failed to make the difference as he used to do during the first part of the campaign."

Echoing those remarks in regards to Giroud, La Tereca added: "Olivier Giroud, missing during much of 2014 has overshadowed Sanchez a little bit inside the area. Now he is doing a role as an assistant while the French hitman tried to go straight to the net."

Sanchez remains the certified leading man at Arsenal, as oppose to his time at Lionel Messi-led Barcelona, but there now seems to be a growing sentiment that, much like during his Nou Camp stint, he is finding his impact restricted due to those around him.

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch