Barcelona’s shining star

Barcelona have recently hit a slump in the league as they continue to drop points, allowing Real Madrid to extend their lead at the top of La Liga. Although they recently saw off Madrid in the Copa del rey, it looks as though their aim of retaining the League title is slipping away from them.

However there is one star shining brightly for the Catalonian side and it isn’t the little magician from Argentina. The man I am talking about is Barcelona’s number 9 Alexis Sanchez.

When he first came to Europe in 2006 Alexis wasn’t very well known but many said he had potential to be a world class player. He went out on loan for two seasons to play in South America for club sides Colo-Colo and River Plate where he impressed many and on his return to Italy Udinese placed him in the squad for his debut season in Europe. 

Alexis is one of the most talented players from Chile at the moment in world football, he joined up with fellow countrymen Mauricio Isla in 2008 at Udinese where he played his first full season for the Italian club. He and Isla formed a good understanding with one another playing right and left wing.

On 27th February 2011 Alexis went into the record books for scoring 4 goals in a 7-0 win over Palermo, which was a record for the most goals scored in one game by a Chilean in Serie A. The best of it was he only played 52 minutes of that match.

However that match wasn’t what attracted Barcelona to Alexis. Barcelona took note of Alexis when during the season 2010/11 he and Italian strike partner Antonio Di Natale became one of the best scoring duo in Serie A history tallying 39 goals between them in one season. This tally was only two goals short of the great partnership of Del Piero and Trezeguet at Juventus.

Alexis collected an award for his efforts that season as he was voted ‘the world’s most promising young player of 2011’ by votes casted on He narrowly won the vote ahead of Gareth Bale.

When he first arrived to the Camp Nou from Udinese in the summer many fans were unsure as to whether or not he would live up to the price tag that he brought with him. The Chilean winger now turned striker has certainly begun to live up to the €26 million fee Udinese received.

With David Villa out for the rest of the season and Pedro having only recently returned from injury, Alexis got his chance and took it. He has scored in 3 of the last 5 league games for Barcelona taking his record to 7 goals and 3 assists in the 12 games he has played.

Alexis is known for his frightening pace and amazing dribbling ability. In the recent Copa del rey matches against Real Madrid Alexis caused the Madrid’s defence all sorts of problems with the clever runs he made.

The Chilean forward is also beginning to link up well with Lionel Messi, a partnership that can be deadly as both players take a similar approach of pace and agility when on the pitch. If Alexis can take his chance of getting regular first team football at Barcelona he could potentially become one of the great forwards at the club and follow the likes of Samuel Eto’o, Ronaldinho and of course Lionel Messi.

Daniel Clark @ClarkyD92

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