Half way through the last day of the transfer period, Manchester City were almost 100% sure Alexis Sanchez would be playing for them the next nine months. By the end of the day, they knew it was not going to happen, after all.
City and Arsenal had reached a verbal agreement, setting the fee at £60m. The reason why the deal was not signed, was that Arsenal wanted to finalize first the transfer of Thomas Lemar from Monaco, something they thought they had very good chances to do.
As hours passed though, it was made clear that the France international was not that eager to move to Arsenal, the negotiations with Monaco collapsed, and subsequently, City were informed that their deal with Arsenal was off.
As for Sanchez himself, according to reports, he had taken the transfer for granted, his teammates in Chile’s national team congratulated him before breakfast, and, according to people close to the player, he even signed the contract, because he would be busy later, with Chile’s World Cup qualifier against Paraguay (a game the Copa America titleholders lost 3-0 at home, getting in serious trouble regarding their qualification for the 2018 World Cup finals).
Sanchez is expected back to London next week, and it will be interesting to see how his first days there will be, and of course how involved he will be in their next Premier League game.