Alexis Sanchez still has the potential to be a key player for Manchester United, according to the forward’s former Chile coach Juan Antonio Pizzi.
The 31-year-old joined United in January 2018 from Arsenal in a swap deal involving Henrikh Mkhitaryan, but he has been unable to make a sustained impact at Old Trafford.
He scored just three goals in 32 Premier League appearances before being allowed to join Inter on a season-long loan deal last summer.
Sanchez has similarly struggled at San Siro and he spent three months out of action after undergoing ankle surgery, while his only Serie A goal against Sampdoria was followed by a red card in the same match.
But Pizzi, who coached Sanchez and Chile to Copa America success in 2016, believes the die is not yet cast on the attacker’s United career, if he can rediscover the form he displayed during his successful period at Arsenal.
“Alexis was in a perfect place at Arsenal and suddenly he changes city, coach, team-mates, fans [by joining Manchester United] … sometimes that adaptation happens quickly, sometimes it takes longer,” Pizzi told The Guardian.
“In Alexis’s case, I think it took too long. He didn’t seem to be able to connect and emotionally he dropped. The consequences of that state of mind were translated in his performances.
“I don’t know what destiny holds for him but I think this experience in Italy, away from English football, might be good for him. I really hope so.
“I’m sure that if he can find tranquillity and his form, he’ll be very important for United.”