Arsenal Balls: Alexis Sanchez on life, loves and being tough
Alexis Sanchez, Arsenal’s tireless Chilean, is talking to The Times’ Rory Smith. Sanchez is tough. The old story about foreigners not liking it up them is bunkum.
On the Christmas truck:
“I would run after them with all the other kids. It was people from the council on the truck. They would throw caramellos, sweets, and games. I always wished they would throw a football. That was what I wanted. I said to myself when I was young that one day, if I ever had the chance, I would do the same, but instead of sweets, I would throw footballs.”
And he does. When he returns to his native Tocopilla, he tosses out sweets and many footballs.
“In my head, I do not feel like a famous person. I am just normal, no different to someone in the street. I am just a kid who happens to play football. Maybe one day that will change, I will mature [into something else], but at the moment that is what I am, who I am, and I like it. When I play, I don’t think about how much I cost. I just try to enjoy myself like it is the first match I ever played.”
“When I was younger, I played football on the streets, on a scrap of land, wherever I could. I had to apologise to the neighbours a few times for breaking windows, like all kids. Quite a few times, actually. We did not have a pitch or goalposts or anything like that. We would put down two rocks and that was the goal. There was just the ground and the ball. It did not bother me not to have proper boots or a good pitch. It was enough to be with my friends and to be playing. It is no different now. I do not mind where I play. I just love playing…”
Read it all.