The reasoning does make sense, in the short term, but Arsenal would be best off holding onto the Chilean.

Alexis Sanchez is available on a free transfer in just over five months but football is flooded with more money than sense at the moment.

Arsenal may be loath to part ways with Sanchez but Manchester clubs City and United are both willing to pay at least £20m to take him off their hands for the second half of the season. City seemed well set to get their man but late interest from United, who are said to be offering £25m and higher wages, could drive that price up.

Jamie Redknapp believes it is “ridiculous” that Arsenal have allowed themselves get to a position where three of their big names – Sanchez, Mesut Ozil and Jack Wilshere – are all out of contract this summer.

The former Liverpool and England midfielder argues, in his Sky Sports column, that the Gunners would be immeasurably worse off if they lost the Chilean, either in the current transfer window or for free in the summer.

However, if Arsenal are looking to cash in, Redknapp is convinced Sanchez should not follow the same path Robin van Persie took, to Manchester United. He declares:

‘For them to finish in the top four this season is not going got be easy, and that’s why selling Sanchez to Manchester United would make no sense to me at all.

‘Sell him to City. The truth is that Arsenal and Manchester City aren’t rivals, but Arsenal are big rivals with United because they are both fighting for those top…

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