Alexis Sanchez's amazing record at Wembley
It's fair to say that Alexis Sanchez enjoys playing at Wembley Stadium.
The Chilean is set to make his Premier League debut for Manchester United in tonight's match against Tottenham Hotspur, fresh from an impressive Reds bow at Yeovil Town in the Emirates FA Cup last Friday, when he set up goals for Marcus Rashford and Ander Herrera in a 4-0 win over the League Two club.
Alexis played his first game at the national stadium five years ago and has since shown that he can rise to the big occasion, as he now boasts a formidable record of seven goals and an assist in six appearances.
In November 2013, the forward had a memorable first experience when scoring both goals in Chile's 2-0 win over England, heading the opener before doubling his tally with a cool finish after a defensive mistake.
He also bagged a brace on his first club outing at Wembley, with Arsenal, to seal a 2-1 victory over Reading in an FA Cup semi-final in April 2015, firing home from close range before striking an extra-time winner.
The following month, Alexis scored one of the great FA Cup final goals during the Gunners’ 4-0 thrashing of Aston Villa. After setting up Theo Walcott’s first-half opener, he found the net shortly after the break with a dipping thunderbolt from 25 yards and became only the second Chilean to score in the showpiece finale.
The 29-year-old also came up with the goods at the business end of Arsenal’s successful FA Cup campaign last season, by scoring another extra-time winner in the semi-finals, lashing home a loose ball inside the box to help defeat Manchester City 2-1 in April.
Alexis then capped off his best-ever goal-scoring campaign by netting Arsenal’s fastest FA Cup final goal, when opening the scoring after just 229 seconds in their eventual 2-1 victory over Chelsea a month later. It was his 30th goal of a phenomenal season on a personal level.
The only game in which Alexis has failed to score at Wembley was Arsenal’s 3-0 win over Man City in the 2014 Community Shield, and he notably missed the Gunners’ win over Chelsea on penalties this season.
ALEXIS WILL HANDLE THE BOO BOYS
As our new no.7 prepares to pull on a United shirt at Wembley, he is likely to receive a hostile reception from Tottenham fans as an ex-Arsenal player. But, speaking in his pre-match press conference, Jose Mourinho said the Chilean will be unfazed by the welcome he receives from Spurs supporters.
“I think he doesn't care,” the boss told reporters at the Aon Training Complex.
“I think he's probably going to get that kind of reception everywhere – the previous rivalry between Spurs and Arsenal doesn't matter. I think he’ll get a little bit of that everywhere.
“He’s that kind of player – with all of his experience, I think he's used to it. Even in South America, I don’t think it’s easy for a Chilean to go and play in Brazil, Argentina or Paraguay, so I think these guys grew up with a certain level of experiences that I don’t think is a problem for him at all.”
MUTV's live build-up to Tottenham v United begins at 18:00 GMT.