The Chile boss praised his forward for breaking the country’s scoring record after a hard-fought draw with Germany
Juan Antonio Pizzi described Alexis Sanchez’s record-breaking goal for Chile as “very special” after the Arsenal forward made history at the Confederations Cup.
Sanchez’s sixth-minute strike against Germany, taking advantage of a mistake from Gunners team-mate Shkodran Mustafi, made him Chile’s outright record goalscorer, passing Marcelo Salas to reach 38 international goals.
Eduardo Vargas then hit the crossbar for Pizzi’s men, but Lars Stindl struck for the second consecutive game before half-time, which proved to be the final goal of a 1-1 draw in Kazan that leaves both sides waiting to secure their progress to the semi-finals.
“Alexis scored a very special goal because he is now the top scorer ever for Chile,” Pizzi told reporters. “That is very important.
“It was a game of a really high level. There were two teams on the pitch who have a very strong game-plan and I think that is very attractive for the players and spectators.
“Our games are quite intense, we both want to win every game. Sometimes this competitiveness lets us win but sometimes we can only draw.
“You can see how we sometimes blocked each other, especially in front of goal. However, I think the result fits both teams. The players all played very, very well. The opposition have an incredible team, even though they have very young players, and we were able to compete with them toe-to-toe.
“Now we need to rest and recover. We made a huge effort, especially in the first half. We really tried to recover the ball as much as possible while Germany played a different style. They blocked certain spaces but always in their half of the pitch.”
He’s done it… it’s a milestone goal for @Alexis_Sanchez !
— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) June 22, 2017
Chile, who now need a point against Australia in their final match to be sure of a spot in the last four, were the better side in the first half, but made less of an impression after the break.
Pizzi said: “I’m quite sure that wasn’t because we were happy with a draw but we were quite exhausted from the efforts we made before. We made a lot of sacrifices in the first half.
“Both teams respect each other very much and of course the intensity went down. However, I must say that we tried to get to their half as much as possible, even in the second half. Germany also tried to make us nervous and create situations to score.
“We will pick the best options for Australia on Sunday based on how the players recover, but we won’t change our game-plan because it has been very successful.
“It’s impossible to achieve perfection — that is one of the beauties of football. Our small mistake let Germany score, but we think this point is very important.”