Wenger: Alexis Sanchez is Arsenal's Suarez

The Chile international has made a fine start to life in English football and his boss believes he shares many of the same attributes as the Barcelona forward

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has admitted that there are plenty of similarities between Alexis Sanchez and Luis Suarez.

The Chile international has put in a number of impressive performances since his arrival in north London from Barcelona for €41 million in the summer, finding the net on eight occasions.

And Wenger, who tried to sign Suarez from Liverpool in 2013, believes the pair share plenty of the same attributes.

“It is natural to him [Alexis],” he told reporters. “Every day he wants to go out, wants the ball. He doesn’t walk out, he runs out.

“He has a natural level of energy that is unbelievable. You would love everyone to have it but it does not work like that.

“I said many times: when you see where he comes from, where he was born, and you think he finishes at Barcelona and Arsenal, you need something special, or it does not work.

“There are similarities. Suarez sometimes gave the ball to the opponent but he wins it back straightaway. Sanchez is the same. There is no time between offence and defence. They are very quick as well.”

Alexis has joined a long list of South American forwards to have thrived in the Premier League, with Suarez, Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez all having found the net with regularity when in England.

And Wenger believes European countries could learn from the way in which strikers are developed in South America, with academy sides bringing through fewer top-class goalscorers.

“It’s true if we look across Europe and the world of football, then South America is the only continent to develop strikers today,” he added.

“If you look across Europe, where are the strikers from? You will see that at least 80 per cent come from South America.

“So we have to question ourselves what can we add to our academies to develop strikers again.

“If you look at the 1960s and 1970s in England – even when I arrived in 1996 – in every club you had strikers. And I mean strikers – strikers that could head the ball. They were on every cross. We have less now.”

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