Alexis Sanchez has pointed the finger of blame for his torrid time at Manchester United, revealing that he wanted to leave the club after only one training session following his move from Arsenal in 2018.
The Chilean endured a nightmare spell at Old Trafford, despite the Red Devils paying him up to £560,000-a-week. He scored just five goals in 45 matches before moving to Inter Milan on loan for the 2019-20 season, a move which he made permanent last summer.
The 31-year-old, speaking in a shocking Instagram video, confirmed a Manchester City transfer fell through before he joined United and admitted that he asked to move back to Arsenal after just one day under Jose Mourinho.
Alexis Sanchez has lifted the lid on his time at Manchester United with some shocking truths
The Chilean revealed he asked his agent to move him back to Arsenal after one training session
Sanchez said: ‘I want to tell you about my period at United, about many things that were said and that made me look bad.
‘I got the opportunity to go to United and it seemed tempting to me. It was something nice for me, because when I was a kid I liked that club a lot.
‘I ended up signing without much information about what was happening in the move. The first days that I was with my colleagues, sometimes there are things that you do not realise until you arrive.
‘The first training I had I realised many things. home and I told my representative: “Can’t the contract be terminated to return to Arsenal?”
Sanchez was signed by Manchester United in 2018 and earned around £560,000-a-week
‘They start laughing and I told them that something did not sit right with me. It had already been signed.’
Sanchez recalled one moment at Manchester United when he was left out of the matchday squad by Mourinho for a game against West Ham in September 2018.
It was an incredible fall from grace for the Chilean winger, who just nine months ago was one of the most dangerous attacking players in England’s top flight while at Arsenal.
The 31-year-old was brought to Manchester United from Arsenal by Jose Mourinho (middle)
Sanchez revealed his shock at being dropped by Mourinho (above) for a defeat to West Ham
The Chilean said: ‘In a game with West Ham I wasn’t picked. That had never happened to me as a player. It bothered me and I said it couldn’t be possible.
‘To go from being one of the best in the Premier League to not playing in five months. I came to my house and I was very sad. The next day I trained in a double shift, because I love what I do.’
Manchester United lost the West Ham game 3-1 and Mourinho was sacked just months later with the Red Devils languishing in mid-table. Sanchez then took the opportunity to speak to his successor, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, about a move away.
Sanchez (left) agreed with Mourinho’s replacement Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to move away
Sanchez has thrived since joining Inter Milan in 2019 and recently made his move permanent
Sanchez added: ‘Then the next coach arrived, the current one, and I decided to talk to him. I told him that I needed to take a breather, and the opportunity to go to Inter. He told me that yes, there was no problem.’
The winger scored 80 goals in 166 matches at Arsenal before moving to Old Trafford in a swap for Henrikh Mhkitaryan in January 2018, a blockbuster move that was announced in a now infamous social media video of him apparently playing ‘Glory Glory Man United’ on the piano.
Sanchez’s extraordinary contract cost United up to £560,000 per week, once all aspects of that four-and-a-half-year deal were factored in.
He earned a basic salary of £300,000 per week, plus an additional net payment of £100,000 per week from a £5million-a-year image rights deal.
United also paid £5m in agent’s fees over the course of the contract to the player’s representative Fernando Felicevich.
The club inserted a £5m clause into the deal, payable if Sanchez made 30 starts in a single season. Additional bonuses and employers’ national insurance payments took the potential overall figure to £560,000 per week if Sanchez was successful.
The player admitted the comments made by certain media outlets made him angry during his time at Old Trafford.
He said: ‘Journalists spoke without knowing and it bothered me, it hurt. Former players spoke who had no idea of anything that was happening inside the club and gave their opinion damaging you, that it was your fault.
The Chilean was one of the Premier League’s top attackers while he was at Arsenal
‘Since they had to blame one, they blamed me.’
United legend Gary Neville was among those who were critical of Sanchez during his spell at Old Trafford.
‘Sanchez has been an absolute disaster,’ Neville said on Sky Sports in 2019. ‘I have no idea what’s happened to him. There must be two of them.
‘The one that’s turned up in Manchester I have no idea who that is. (Solskjaer) needs to get him out of the club.’
Sanchez ended the video by revealing he wanted his time at Manchester United to work out, but he has grown from the situation.
‘I only have words of thanks to United for giving me the opportunity to defend the shirt,’ said Sanchez. ‘It bothered me that things did not go the way I wanted.
‘If the atmosphere had been more positive, it would have turned out differently. I tell it all now because I have already passed a period of learning as a player and a person. I would have liked to win everything.’