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Arsene Wenger expects Alexis Sanchez to be “very quickly back to his best” for Arsenal despite the uncertainty which surrounded the Chilean star in the final days of the summer transfer window.
Chile forward Sanchez, 28, came close to joining Manchester City on deadline day, but Wenger has “no doubt about Alexis’ mind and mentality”.
Arsenal agreed a £60m deal with City but it depended on them signing Thomas Lemar, who decided to stay with Monaco.
“I have no doubt about Alexis’ mind and mentality, that people question,” the Frenchman said.
“He needs to come back to full fitness, which he was not (at) against Liverpool. It was his first game, and he has suffered a negative experience with Chile.
“But he is strong mentally and hopefully he will be back very quickly to his best.”
“The transfer market is over, there was a lot going on on that front. It’s very difficult for me to speak about that because the most important thing now is our next game,” he said.
Asked whether any Sanchez sale hinged on bringing in Lemar, Wenger added: “That’s what I read everywhere, yes. My view is that it is too difficult to speak about that because Lemar is now in Monaco and of course Sanchez is here.
“I believe you have to keep a certain confidentiality about transfer negotiations. Many things happen at the last second.”
“It is important that we change that and close all that stuff before the championship starts,” he said.
“You can see in the games even in the players’ minds they have no clarity – are they in, are they out? – and are they being tapped up by people in the game who want to get them out?
“It is not a way to work and it is uncomfortable. It is time to kick that out before the season starts.”
Wenger said it was “not true” the Lemar deal failed because the player was not interested in joining Arsenal.
“He decided to stay in Monaco and you have to respect that,” he said.
“The player has a three-year contract to go – so overall you have to respect that.”