Alexis Sanchez to miss Arsenal opener, maybe more, after Copa America win

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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is giving his star attacker Alexis Sanchez a little extra time to prepare for the Premier League season.

The Chilean star played a great deal of competitive soccer this summer for his nation in its long run to the Copa America final, and won’t be returning to London until Aug. 3, according to the BBC.

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Arsenal’s first three games are home for West Ham, away at Crystal Palace and home to Liverpool.

From the BBC:

Gunners boss Arsene Wenger said: “Alexis will be back with us on 3 August and usually it takes three weeks to be competitive.

“With Alexis it could be a bit less. He will miss certainly the first game.”

Sanchez will miss the Community Shield against Chelsea on 2 August.

That’s nothing new — see Bayern Munich’s resting players after the 2014 World Cup — but it’s also a big hit for Arsenal (not to mention fantasy Premier League nerds like myself).