11 Jul 2014

Striker Sanchez off to Arsenal

10:49 am on 11 July 2014

The English Premier League football club Arsenal have completed the signing of Barcelona striker Alexis Sanchez.

No fee was disclosed but Arsenal are believed to have paid in the region of $NZ 70 million for the 25-year-old Chile international who joined Barca from Udinese in 2011.

The clubs had already reached a deal in principle but were ironing out personal terms for the player who was deemed surplus to requirements at Barca by new manager Luis Enrique despite him scoring 39 goals in 88 appearances for the Catalans.

Sanchez's move to London will be a blow to Liverpool who were hoping to sign him as part of a deal taking Luis Suarez in the other direction. Sanchez had also attracted interest from Italian champions Juventus.

Sanchez was a key member of the Chile team that shone in Brazil, reaching the World Cup last 16 before losing to the hosts on penalties.

He scored two goals in four appearances.

Arsenal's lack of striking prowess has been blamed for their failure to challenge for the Premier League title since the departure of Robin van Persie to Manchester United in 2012.

Their total of 68 goals from 38 matches was the lowest of the top four last season with Frenchman Olivier Giroud top scoring in the league with 16.