Alexis Sanchez has agreed a four-and-a-half-year contract to play for Manchester United, claims the Daily Telegraph, one which will net the Chilean strike £14 million-a-year after tax.
The paper revealed details of the eye-watering contract shortly after Everton had confirmed the capture of Theo Walcott, leaving Arsenal two down in their frontline.
Not that Walcott will be particularly missed. As he said in putting pen to paper on a deal that will keep him at Goodison Park until 2021, “it felt like it was time for me to move on”.
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The feeling is mutual with Walcott a fringe player in recent seasons at Arsenal as inconsistency and injury derailed his development.
“It was sad but it’s exciting at the same time and I want to reignite my career and push Everton to win things as they have done before,” said Walcott, adding that he had discussed the potential move with Everton manager Sam Allardyce before agreeing to join the Merseyside club.
“The manager is very hungry and it’s just what I need. I’ve had a couple of chats with him and straight away I felt that hunger and that desire that he wanted from me.”
In a statement, Arsenal thanked Walcott “for his contribution to the club and wish him well for the future”.
As for Sanchez, the Telegraph says that his United contract means the South American will pocket £14m a year after tax “on top of his £30m valuation, £20m signing-on fee, and an agents’ fee worth more than £10m”.
It was those dizzying figures that prompted Manchester City to withdraw from the race to sign Sanchez but United have no such qualms and he becomes the second Arsenal star in recent seasons to make the trip north to Old Trafford, following Robin van Persie, who quit the Emirates in 2012.
However, The Sun has a word of warning for United, and Sanchez, with the paper claiming that Arsenal “could still KO the transfer if they cannot land a replacement”.
While Arsene Wenger gave Sanchez permission to negotiate personal terms with United, and with the Old Trafford club ready to meet Arsenal’s £35m asking price, everything for a smooth transfer looks in place.
But it’s believed Wenger isn’t bowled over by United’s offer of a swap deal involving the underwhelming Armenian Henrikh Mkhitaryan.
Negotiations for Borussia Dortmund striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Bordeaux winger Malcom are ongoing, says the Sun, but if neither bears fruit then it may be that Arsenal keep hold of Sanchez for the rest of the season, allowing him to leave on a free transfer in June.
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