MANCHESTER, United Kingdom, Dec 18- Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola conceded he may not have done Alexis Sanchez any favours by playing him out wide when they were both at Barcelona.
With a plethora of attacking talent available to Guardiola in his time with Barca, Sanchez was often shifted out to the wing where he rarely shone ahead of players like Lionel Messi.
However, since his move to Arsenal, the Chilean playmaker has been used in a more central role and has become a key player for the Gunners in the attacking third and the former Catalans manager admitted he may have done Sanchez a disservice.
“He played really good in Barcelona but normally when you play with (Lionel) Messi all the players beside him are not at his level,” Guardiola said.
“I think the position Arsenal are using him as a striker, in front, it is perfect for him. In Barcelona maybe I didn’t help him too much because he played wide. He can do that but he is better between the lines, closer to the goal.
“In some moments he played there, especially one game against Chelsea in the Champions League semi-finals. He played as a striker and after 40 minutes we went 2-0 up but it was an unlucky game and we lost and Chelsea reached the final.
“He can play there and in several positions – left, right. He is a fighter in spirit, he is a character, he is a winner. He is a class, class player and now he is playing really well.”
Guardiola will have to find a way of keeping Sanchez in check when his City side welcome Arsenal to the Etihad Stadium on Sunday.