The Colombian says the Real Madrid and Chelsea legend is the player he admired most when he was younger.
The player was taking part in a sporting Q&A in which he answered various questions about his sporting history, such as where he played his first ever game and the first World Cup he remembers.
When it came to naming his football idol, it was the former Real Madrid star he elected, saying that because they played in the same position the admiration was natural.
“I always looked up to Chelsea's Claude Makelele,” he told avfc.co.uk.
“He played a very important role in the team and everybody spoke about him. I was in the same position when I was young and I watched him all the time.”
Choosing Makelele is certainly a strange choice from Sanchez, with players often going for the more attacking players as their idols from childhood.
However, it shows the standing that the former Blues man still has in the game, with that defensive midfield role now being widely regarded as the Makelele role by managers, players and pundits alike.
While Sanchez has some way to go to reach the standards set by the former France star, manager Tim Sherwood would definitely be pleased if the Colombian models his game on his idol and continues to improve.
If Sanchez can be half of the player Makelele was, then Villa will certainly have a decent player on their hands in future.