The timing could not have been better, as he made the difference for the Red Devils in their 3-2 win over Manchester City at the Etihad.
Sanchez played the key role in all three goals in United’s second half dominance, after being 2-0 down in the first half.
The Chilean provided two key assists and also the perfect pass for Ander Herrera to set up Paul Pogba for the first goal.
The former Arsenal forward also showed his assurance in the game and talked to Chris Smalling in a pivotal moment.
The English defender scored what ended up as United’s winner, and just as he got his shot into the net, Sanchez called Smalling aside after the celebration. One must wonder what he must have said to the central defender in a pep talk.
According to reports, it seems likely that the experienced campaigner talked to Smalling to keep the concentration levels high at the back, and not allow City a chance to get to level terms.
Smalling, who has been ignored by Gareth Southgate for England recently, was at fault for the first goal United conceded. He did not mark Vincent Kompany as one should have, and it led to the Belgian scoring the opener.
Therefore, it’s no wonder Sanchez wanted the defenders to focus and keep the game alive, and earn United a rare victory over leaders City.
Smalling has played 39 matches this season across all competitions, and has scored three goals including the winner against City.