Alexis Sanchez's Arrival Reportedly Openly Discussed by Manchester City Players

Matt Jones@@MattJFootballFeatured ColumnistJuly 31, 2017

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 23: A thumbs up from Alexis Sanchez of Arsenal after the Emirates FA Cup semi-final match between Arsenal and Manchester City at Wembley Stadium on April 23, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Catherine Ivill - AMA/Getty Images)
Catherine Ivill - AMA/Getty Images

Confidence is reportedly high at Manchester City that Alexis Sanchez will arrive from Arsenal this summer, so much so that City players are openly discussing his acquisition among themselves.

According to James Robson of the Manchester Evening News, there is hope at City that the Gunners will not maintain their stance that Sanchez will not be sold this summer. Manager Pep Guardiola is said to be hopeful of getting a £50 million deal done for the 28-year-old.

"There is an anticipation within the squad that the Chilean will head to the Etihad this summer, with some wondering where that leaves the current forwards," Robson noted. "Guardiola is determined to add more firepower to his attack and has pursued Sanchez and Kylian Mbappe throughout this transfer window."

LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 26: Coach and manager Pep Guardiola of Manchester City during the International Champions Cup 2017 match between Manchester City and Real Madrid at Los Angeles Coliseum July 26, 2017, in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevork Dja
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

As noted in the report, Arsenal have made it clear they will not entertain any offers for their star forward, despite the fact he has one year remaining on his current contract.

Sanchez has yet to make his return for pre-season training with Arsenal. As reported by Mattias Karen of ESPN, Gunners boss Arsene Wenger suggested the Chile international's comeback has been delayed due to sickness, and it's anticipated he will be with the group on Tuesday.

Having already spent heavily to recruit the likes of Bernardo Silva, Danilo, Kyle Walker, Benjamin Mendy and Ederson in this window, it's clear City are ready to launch a significant title challenge. If Sanchez also arrived, Guardiola's men would be the favourites for Premier League glory.

According to Robson, the coach was concerned by the team's profligacy in front of goal in his debut term. As noted by James Ducker of the Daily Telegraph, it appears Guardiola is taking steps to ensure that's not the case in 2017-18:

Guardiola is evidently holding his attacking players to high standards, as much of the football world will look on enviously at the talent he can call upon in this area of the field.

At the point of the attack, Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus are likely to battle for a starting spot. Meanwhile, in the advanced positions on the flanks, Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling boast the talent to pose problems aplenty for Premier League defenders.

City already have some incredible firepower at their disposal.
City already have some incredible firepower at their disposal.Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

During his time at Arsenal, Sanchez has thrived across the front line. For the rest of English football's top flight, the prospect of the forward joining the aforementioned stars is an intimidating one.

And despite Wenger's stance over the player, sports journalist Shane Burns wouldn't be surprised to see Arsenal change their tune:

Arsenal have sold key men to City before, with the likes of Samir Nasri, Gael Clichy and Kolo Toure enjoying success at the Etihad Stadium. However, losing their best player to a potential title rival would be a massive setback before the season starts.

Sanchez would surely love to work under Guardiola again, with the pair having spent time together at Barcelona. Nevertheless, you sense this is going to be a difficult one for City to get over the line.