Friday 9 December 2016

Injury boost for Sanchez and Arsenal as striker passed fit for Chile qualifier

Published 14/11/2016 | 17:06

Alexis Sanchez has been in superb form for Arsenal this season
Alexis Sanchez has been in superb form for Arsenal this season

Alexis Sanchez is available for Chile's World Cup qualifier against Uruguay after returning from injury, La Roja coach Juan Antonio Pizzi has confirmed.

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The Arsenal striker missed last Thursday's goalless draw in Colombia after suffering what the Chile Football Association described as a ''low-grade muscle injury'' during training.

Sanchez's recovery was being monitored ahead of Tuesday's visit of Uruguay to Santiago but, after returning to full training with his team-mates, the 27-year-old is now in line for a recall.

Pizzi also said Manchester City goalkeeper Claudio Bravo and Bayern Munich midfielder Arturo Vidal are available after knocks.

"Sanchez was not ready for the game in Colombia, but we knew the injury was a small one and we could have him for this match. The three of them (Sanchez, Vidal and Bravo) are available to me for tomorrow," Pizzi told a press conference.

He added of Sanchez: "It's not that he hasn't trained, he's trained every day, even when we were in Colombia he did a different kind of work. Yesterday he took part in full training."

Pizzi also dismissed any suggestion the injured players' clubs had sought to influence his selection decisions.

"At no time have we received pressure from any club. My stance is that I will never use a player who is not fit or capable of playing," he said in quotes reported by the South American media.

"All of the clubs can remain calm, we are very respectful of our players. The health of our players is paramount, we will never force any player who has not got the medical all-clear."

The Sanchez news will be a boost to Arsenal, with the former Barcelona forward having scored eight goals in 15 matches for the Gunners this season.

Arsenal travel to Old Trafford to face Manchester United in the Premier League this weekend.

Bravo's Manchester City, meanwhile, go to Crystal Palace.

Press Association

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