Thierry Henry reflected the feelings of all Arsenal fans when he said: Alexis Sanchez is Arsene Wenger’s best signing in the last six years.
The Chilean striker, 26, has won the hearts of Gooners with a sensational debut season since his £33million summer move from Barcelona.
He has been the shining light in Arsenal’s worst start to a campaign in a generation — and has all but single-handedly kept them in top-four contention.
Emirates hero Henry said: “He’s the best signing in the last six years. Arsenal were looking for a player that can deliver on a daily basis — and they have found one
“He is brilliant, so is his work-rate. He can see the game incredibly as you saw with his part in the Koscielny goal against Stoke on Sunday.
“He scores and doesn’t need a lot of opportunities to put the ball in back of the net.
“And that is very important. He is a very, very good player and you know that if he is on tune, then Arsenal have a lot of chances to win the game.
“It is still early days but so far it is very good. He is doing extremely well.
“He is going to score goals but it is his all-round game that I am so impressed with.
“That has no price. As a fan, as any Arsenal fan, we were waiting to have a player like that. Finally we have one.”
But did Henry think Sanchez would become the leader of Arsenal almost instantly?
The greatest Gunner in history added: “Yeah. He struggled at the beginning, like everybody. But when he got into a rhythm, you can see the quality.
“We should all be happy with him, especially Arsenal. He is going to be great player for many years.”
Few people know the Barcelona dressing room, dominated by the likes of Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta and Xavi, like Henry, who spent three glory-filled seasons at the Nou Camp after quitting north London in 2007.
Arsenal’s all-time record scorer was not surprised Barca let such a talent slip from their grasp but refused to say why.
He said: “I don’t want to elaborate on that, but I wasn’t surprised, no.”
The former skipper insisted that Arsenal are not becoming over-reliant on Sanchez to carry the team — and argued that the Gunners will only be successful as
He added: “In some of the games when he hasn’t appeared, Arsenal have won them. It is not always down to him.
“As when I was playing there, you need a team around you. Sanchez didn’t have a great game against West Ham, for example — and they won.
“He didn’t have a great game against QPR and they won, so there you go. You play with 11 players on the field, it has to be a team effort.
“I haven’t been around the dressing room for a long time and I don’t know what they are working on.
“But, from afar, they don’t seem so far away. Having said that, they are still some distance from the top spot.
“All I will say is, that when he is in tune, it is way better for Arsenal. On the other side, it is going to take a team effort to get back to the top. They have lacked continuity and that is why there is a gap from the top.”