Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez Admits One Million Euro Tax Fraud

Alexis Sanchez’s confession could see him receive a fine and possibly a non-custodial prison sentence

Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez Admits One Million Euro Tax Fraud

Arsenal star Alexis Sanchez on Monday admitted defrauding Spanish tax authorities of 983,443 euros ($1 million) during his time with La Liga giants Barcelona.

The 28-year-old Chile international’s confession could see him receive a fine and possibly a non-custodial prison sentence.

Giving evidence via video link from London, Sanchez “recognised a tax error which he has settled with the Spanish Treasury,” a judicial source said.

Sanchez admitted that his tax declarations for 2012 and 2013 had not included profits from his image rights, which transited through a company based in Malta.

The forward also admitted that he had not stated that he owned the company Numidia Trading Limited.

The case is similar to former Barcelona team-mate Javier Mascherano, who was handed a one-year prison term in January 2016 and fined 815,000 euros for tax fraud.

In Spain sentences of less than two years are in general not served.

Barcelona and Argentina star Lionel Messi and his father were also sentenced to 21 months in prison and fined two million euros in July 2016 for tax fraud estimated at more than four million euros between 2007 and 2009.

Olivier Giroud: Arsenal players want Arsene Wenger to stay

Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud says he and his teammates are hopeful manager Arsene Wenger will sign a new deal to extend his stay at the club.

Olivier Giroud: Arsenal players want Arsene Wenger to stay

Wenger’s contract is set to expire at the end of the season, and the Gunner’s finish to the season is set to have big implications on the Frenchmen’s future.

“We hope that the boss will sign a new contract,” the French international said.

“Because we all want to keep going with this squad.

“It [would] be nice news for the team and the club.

“From my side, obviously it’s a good thing because I feel very good at Arsenal.

“I really want to carry on to win the league, and to always improve myself.”

The Gunners sit in fourth place on the table, eight points behind leaders Chelsea and were at their brilliant best on the weekend with a 4-0 rout of bottom of the table Swansea City.

They will be hoping to close the gap on the Blues this weekend when they host Burnley at the Emirates.

‘I am really happy at Arsenal’ – Alexis Sanchez

Alexis Sanchez insists he is “really happy” at Arsenal and hopes to win the Premier League or Champions League at the club.

'I am really happy at Arsenal' - Alexis Sanchez

The former Barcelona man, along with Mesut Ozil, has under 18 months remaining on his current contract and is understood to be stalling on recommitting over issues such as Arsene Wenger’s future and their own pay.

The Chilean, in words that mirror that of Ozil’s from Sunday after being named German player of the year for a fifth time, says he is “comfortable” at the club and wants to repay their fans’ faith with silverware.

“I definitely feel like an important player, and my team-mates let me know every day,” he told Arsenal’s official YouTube channel. “I try to prove that I am an important player every day and game after game.

“I believe we have the players and the quality to win many things. I feel really happy and comfortable at the club. I want to give the fans a new title.

“We always get our fans’ support in the thick and thin, which is great. We must win the Premier League or Champions League for them.”

Ozil seemed visibly upset after being substituted during Arsenal’s dominant 4-0 win at Swansea City, sitting on the bench with a coat over his head as he watched the final 11 minutes of the game.

COHEN BRAMALL will make his first appearance as an Arsenal player tonight

 COHEN BRAMALL will make his first appearance as an Arsenal player tonight.
Cohen Bramall will get his first taste of Arsenal action tonight

Cohen Bramall will get his first taste of Arsenal action tonight

The 20-year-old left-back has been selected for the club’s Under-23 side to face Southampton this evening.

The Gunners signed Bramall from non-league side Hednesford Town last week.

Bramall impressed boss Arsene Wenger with his pace and quality with the Arsenal boss handing him a two-and-a-half year deal.

He is now set for his first taste of action in a Arsenal shirt as the club’s youth side take on the Saints at their Staplewood training ground.

In more good news for Wenger and co, Chuba Akpom will continue his injury recovery this evening.

Akpom suffered a back injury during Arsenal’s 4-0 EFL Cup win over Nottingham Forest in September.

He made his return to action in the Under-23s’ 2-1 win over Derby recently and the 21-year-old forward starts again tonight as he continues his comeback.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Jeff Reine-Adelaide, who have both enjoyed first-team chances this season, are also in the starting eleven.

Iwobi better than Ozil – Henry

Thierry Henry believes Arsene Wenger should consider picking Alex Iwobi ahead of Mesut Ozil for Arsenal.

Iwobi better than Ozil - Henry

 Ozil has started all but four of Arsenal’s Premier League games this season, missing the season-opening 4-3 defeat to Liverpool and 0-0 draw with Leicester in the first two weeks.

The German has also been sidelined for the Gunners’ last two matches – the 2-0 win over Crystal Palace and 3-3 draw with Bournemouth.

Iwobi has been entrusted as the No 10 in Ozil’s absence, and the Nigerian has impressed.

Henry believes he should be considered ahead of Ozil in that position against lesser sides.

“Iwobi is better off in the middle for Arsenal when they come up against teams who aredefensively minded like we saw against Crystal Palace,” he said.

“Wenger must have seen it, and hopefully he will be picked ahead of Ozil in such games.

“He moves the ball quicker and faster leaving opposition defenders in his wake. He belongs to the middle.”

Giroud wonder strike helps see off Palace

Giroud wonder strike helps see off Palace

Giroud wonder strike

Olivier Giroud scored with a superb, improvised backheeled volley as Arsenal eased past struggling Crystal Palace with a 2-0 win that moved them into third spot in the Premier League.

The France international produced a flying scorpion-like flick with his left heel to convert Alexis Sanchez’s cross while tumbling forward following an Arsenal counter-attack, which helped build with another neat flick, in the 17th minute.

It was uncannily similar to Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s goal for Manchester United against Sunderland on Boxing Day.

While Arsenal’s first goal was a stunning piece of improvisation their second after 55 minutes was a messy affair with Alex Iwobi’s looping header dropping in via Palace defender Joel Ward who failed to make a goalline clearance.

Christian Benteke wasted the best of Palace’s few chances when he headed wide shortly before Iwobi’s effort and though Sam Allardyce’s side did briefly rally having fallen two goals behind they never looked likely to get back into the game.

But Arsenal were dominant as they moved above Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur into third, nine points behind rampant leaders Chelsea and one ahead of Tottenham Hotspur, who beat Watford 4-1 away earlier on Sunday.

Nice one Olivier Giroud

Olivier Giroud close to signing new contract

Olivier Giroud recently spoke of the fact that he is yet to sign a contract extension with the Gunners but hinted that he could be willing to commit his long-term future to the club, according to multiple reports.

Olivier Giroud scored on his first Premier League start of the season in Arsenal's win over West Brom on Boxing Day

The France international scored the winner against West Bromwich Albion on Boxing Day to give Arsenal are a crucial three points following defeats to Everton and Manchester City respectively. The 30-year-old striker’s contract is due to run out at the end of the next season but Wenger has urged him to sign a new deal with the club. Reports had stated that Giroud had indeed signed a new deal with the club which the player himself denied.

‘People have been saying I have signed a new contract, it is not true but may be soon.’

The French striker also spoke about he has kept himself focused amid his relegation to the bench.

‘It is all about keeping the focus high. Always keep working hard at training. I was speaking with the boss, we had a couple of discussions together and he explained to me why I hadn’t played too much until here. But football is an everlasting new beginning, as I used to say, and you always have to keep focused and wait for your time.

‘Today I played, I tried to give everything for the team and hopefully things will change for me. But as long as the team is getting better I am happy and I am part of the club since five years and I want to carry on. But we have to see, I need more time of games but we will see in the future. The best thing is to keep within distance of Chelsea.’

Theo Walcott is set to miss Arsenal’s matches against Crystal Palace and Bournemouth, meaning that Giroud could well keep his place in the team for at least the next few weeks. Since the beginning of the season, Giroud has had to deputise for most of the season as a result of missing Arsenal’s pre-season while also picking up an injury late in September.

‘I came back a bit late from the Euros and it was nice for my body because I could rest but not good for me because the team was doing well and another striker was doing well up front.’

‘This season has been difficult because also I was injured for a month and a half, so it hasn’t been easy. I don’t want to talk too much about me but it was a big day for me but also a turning point for the team because, if we didn’t win, we would have been in trouble. We always try to be positive and keep the faith in our game, keep going and keep believing and at the end of the day that has paid off.’

Arsenal’s Gabriel breaks down in tears during touching Chapecoense tribute message

Arsenal defender Gabriel could not hold back the tears as he spoke about the tragic plane crash in Colombia which saw 71 people lose their life including 19 of the Brazilian football team Chapecoense.

Gabriel was talking after Arsenal’s EFL Cup defeat to Southampton last night, a match which saw the Brazilian wipe away tears during the minute silence before kick-off.

The 26-year-old Brazilian, also held up a supportive banner with striker Lucas Perez which read: #ForcaChape.

Gabriel

After the 2-0 match, Gabriel found it hard to take about the tragedy but wanted to offer his support to his countrymen.

“I had many friends over there,” Gabriel said. “I played for Vitoria for many years and I worked with the coach and the backroom staff, and two other players as well. We were very close friends. This is really hard to take, it’s something we never imagine to happen to a close friend. The minimum I can do is send my condolences to all of their families and wish that they can carry on.”

The Brazilian club were due to play Atletico Nacional in the first leg of their Copa Sudamericana final on Wednesday before tragedy struck.

A Brazilian television channel broadcasted 90 minutes of silence on Wednesday night as a tribute to those who died in the Chapecoense plane crash.

Fox Sports Brasil, which was scheduled to show Chapecoense’s final against Atletico Nacional on Wednesday evening, instead aired 90 minutes of silence in memory of those who lost their lives

 

Santi Cazorla out for three months with ankle injury

Arsenal playmaker Santi Cazorla will have surgery on his right ankle and be out for about three months, robbing the team of its creative influence in central midfield.

Santi Cazorla out for three months with ankle injury

The Spain international will undergo an operation in Sweden next week, Arsenal said Thursday, after the ankle showed no improvement during a period of rehabilitation. Cazorla has been out since Oct. 19.

In Cazorla’s absence, Arsenal has won two of its five Premier League games and drawn the other three. The team lacks a replacement with the same technique and vision to play in one of the two central-midfield positions.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said last week that Cazorla was a big loss because he was “important to our technical stability in the team, to the quality of our decision-making and to our build-up from deep midfield.”

 Cazorla damaged knee ligaments at about the same stage last season and ended up being out for more than five months.

Sanchez Has Made Centre-Forward Role His Own, Says Walcott

Theo Walcott says Alexis Sanchez has made the centre forward role his own at Arsenal and has admitted Olivier Giroud may have to get used to life on the bench.

Sanchez Has Made Centre-Forward Role His Own, Says Walcott

The Chile international took his tally to 10 for the season with two goals in Sunday’s 3-1 win over Bournemouth at the Emirates.

Despite goals against Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain, Giroud was forced to start the game on the bench and while he came on and had a hand in Arsenal’s third goal, Walcott says Sanchez is definitely first choice up front.

“Alexis has stepped up to making that position his and I think he is enjoying it. I can see the smile when he’s playing — he even did an interview which he never does — and in English!” he said via Standard Sport.

“I’ve been trying to say to him, ‘Talk to the guys when you can’ because his English is better than he thinks. I’m very pleased for him and I really enjoy playing football with him.”

However, Walcott feels that Giroud can still make an impact for Arsenal off the bench, as he did in the 1-1 draw at Old Trafford.

 

“Olivier’s strengths are fantastic,” he added. “I know he will be frustrated with the amount of games he has not played but if you look at his scoring record and how effective he has been when he has been on the pitch — again yesterday, coming off the bench and grabbing an assist.

“It just shows he keeps on reminding the manager what he can do. Alexis, obviously me and him are having a very good relationship at this moment in time. At the start of the season, we created goals for each other and everything was happening.

“Now, you are starting to see signs it is happening again.”

Sanchez’s form has fully justified Wenger’s decision to move him to a more central role and while Giroud has been superb coming off the bench in recent weeks it remains to be seen if he will continue to accept a reduced role.

Emiliano Martinez signs new contract

Arsenal goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez has signed a new long-term deal at the Emirates Stadium.

The 24-year-old has been with the Gunners since joining the academy in 2010 and has played in both of the club’s EFL Cup games so far this season.

 Emiliano Martinez signs new contract

Emiliano Martinez signs new contract

He is currently behind Petr Cech and David Ospina in the pecking order but, having been limited to 10 senior appearances, has now extended his stay.

Martinez honed his talents with loan spells at Oxford, Sheffield Wednesday, Rotherham and Wolves and is likely to feature in the EFL Cup quarter-final tie with Southampton next week.

Arsene Wenger praised the former Argentina Under-20 international, who follows on from Hector Bellerin in signing a fresh contract with the club.

‘If you look at him, I personally see all the top qualities that a goalkeeper needs,’ Wenger told Arsenal Player.

‘He has the stature, he has the passion, he has the technical quality, he has the decision-making, he has huge power and he’s not frightened of anything.’