The former striker tried to explain why Alexis Sanchez has failed to make an impact at Old Trafford following his arrival from Arsenal.
Robin van Persie knows a thing or two about joining United from Arsenal and going on to be a major success with the Red Devils, winning the Premier League title in his first season at the club.
The Dutchman doesn’t believe Sanchez is happy and that could be a factor behind his below par performances in a United shirt.
Sanchez has failed to live up to the hype since swapping Arsenal for United in January 2018, scoring just five goals since then, in 45 appearances…
He’s had his share of injuries too, especially last season which saw him rack up a sally of one league goal!
Now retired, Van Persie did his best to explain Sanchez’s situation in an interview with the Daily Mail: “He looked happy at Arsenal. He doesn’t look happy now. What I’ve seen and felt over the years is that how you feel mentally, how your life is, has a big influence.
“If you’re happy, you’re 50 per cent fitter, you create more and you enjoy yourself… so he should find a way mentally to change that.”
But is it a football coaches’ job to motivate his players – even if they don’t seem to have any interest? Partly I believe it is, though it shows what a bunch of babies we’re dealing with nowadays. If you’re on the sort of money these lads get weekly, you should be able to motivate yourself!
Being happy makes everything a lot easier.
“It’s a different time,” Van Persie told the Telegraph. “Over the past couple of years a lot has changed. There are a lot of impressions from fans, from social media, he is constantly getting hit about his wages. It’s negative, so he starts negative, and maybe that is difficult.”
Sanchez was a Mourinho signing and RvP mentions that as though it had an impact on his performances, being an attack-minded player coming into a defensively set up side.
He added: “For him it was difficult because he was coming into a defensive playing team. I came into a team with all mature players there already: Rio Ferdinand, Nemanja Vidic, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs, Michael Carrick. At Arsenal I was one of the older ones, captain, and here I could just come in and have fun, because the guys sorted all the other stuff beside it.
“Mentally, I was just having fun. I was happy, I was just enjoying it, really. I did not think about the consequences. I was not using social media back then, so I was not really bothered about what people said. When I went outside it was all positive so I was in my own little bubble of being happy.”