By 90Min
January 25, 2019

Former Arsenal defender Martin Keown has claimed Alex Sanchez could be key for Manchester United, as they travel to north London for Friday's night's eagerly anticipated FA Cup fourth round showdown.

United head to the Emirates for the tie on the back of seven consecutive victories under interim manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, hoping to eliminate the 13-time FA Cup winners in search of their own 13th crown.

With the two sides putting their Premier League top four ambitions on the back burner for one weekend, the return of Sanchez from injury could play a vital role in the clash, according to Arsenal favourite Keown.

“He could cause Arsenal serious problems down their left flank. Sead Kolasinac plays as more of a wing-back than a defender, often leaving gaping holes behind him," said Keown, in his Daily Mail column.

“Those are the kind of spaces Sanchez will be looking to exploit to destroy Arsenal’s FA Cup dream. This is a player who needs the love of his manager. Solskjaer has been talking him up in recent weeks as if readying him for this huge clash at the Emirates.”

Sanchez has endured a less than ideal start to life at Old Trafford since making the switch to  United a year ago, being unable to recapture the form that saw him heralded as one of the Premier League's most feared stars, mustering just four goals so far for the Red Devils.

Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/GettyImages

The Chilean has recovered from a thigh injury in time to play a part at his former stomping ground, with Keown stating he'll be eager to inflict pain on his previous employers on Friday night.

“What better opportunity for the forward to relaunch his Manchester United career than by going back to his old club and knocking them out of the FA Cup?" he added. “Not only will he be desperate to prove a point to the Arsenal fans, but Sanchez gets a real buzz from playing in this competition."

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