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  • Alexis SANCHEZ
  • Chile
  • Forward
  • 119International Caps
  • 38International Goals
  • years old
  • 169cm
  • First internationalChile - New Zealand 27 Apr 2006
  • Date of Birth19 Dec 1988

Given his bewitching dribbling skills, his speed and the fact that he hails from Tocopilla, a city whose name translates as 'the Devil's Corner', Chile talisman Alexis Sanchez was clearly born to torment opposition defences.

Even still, his path to the top was not plain sailing. He was rejected by both Colo Colo and Universidad Catolica as a youngster, before joining Cobreloa at 15 and being thrust into the first team by Nelson Acosta as a 16-year-old.

He quickly bagged himself the nickname El Niño Maravilla (the Boy Wonder) and was snapped up by Udinese, although they farmed him out on loan to Colo Colo and River Plate to continue his development.

His progress at international level was equally rapid and although he dazzled at the FIFA U-20 World Cup Canada 2007, by that time he had already spent a year in the senior set-up under Acosta's stewardship.

Indeed, while his maiden season in Italy proved challenging, it was a different story with Chile. After Acosta was replaced by Marcelo Bielsa, Sanchez established himself as a mainstay of the side that finished second on the road to the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ and reached the Round of 16 at the tournament proper.

After bouncing back to triumph in Udine, in 2011 he secured a big-money transfer to Barcelona, where he not only won several pieces of silverware, but also added variety to his game by playing out on the left and even in the No. 9 role.

In the meantime, his influence for his country only grew and, having been pivotal in qualifying, he found the net twice across La Roja's four matches at Brazil 2014.

Following a fine first year at Arsenal, Sanchez scored once in Chile's 2015 Copa America-winning campaign. He made an even bigger mark at the Copa America Centenario 2016, chipping in with three goals in Juan Antonio Pizzi's charges' successful defence of their title and being named in the team of the tournament.