Barcelona striker Alexis Sanchez has welcomed the impact boss Tata Martino has had on him since replacing Tito Vilanova at the Camp Nou.
Chilean international Sanchez notched a hat-trick in the comprehensive 4-0 defeat of Elche on Sunday and is arguably showing his best form since arriving from Udinese in July 2011, something he attributes to Martino.
“Tata has given me the confidence every footballer needs. A confident player can contribute much more than just scoring goals,” he told Canal Plus post-match, whilst also thanking his Barca teammates and in particular strike partner Pedro.
“I must give thanks to my colleagues for making it possible for me to score three goals. Pedro’s assist was almost more his goal than mine.
“When we are both in the starting line-up we try to do our best for the team to take all three points and win everything it can,” he mused, before being asked about his spectacular goal from a free-kick and whether or not he will be a rival to Lionel Messi in that department when the Argentine returns from injury.
“Leo is the one who takes the direct free-kicks. He’s the one who does everything,” said Sanchez.