Chile’s most experienced UEFA Champions League player, Alexis Sánchez has left Arsenal for Manchester United; is he eligible to play in this season’s knockout stages?
Alexis Sánchez has left UEFA Europa League contenders Arsenal to join UEFA Champions League challengers Manchester United on a four-and-a-half-year contract.
Does that mean he is ineligible for the rest of this season’s competition?
No. Since he has not played in the UEFA Champions League this season, Sánchez can be registered for the knockout rounds.
Here are the relevant extracts from the competition regulations.
44.01 For all matches from the start of the round of 16, a club may register a maximum of three new eligible players for the remaining matches in the current competition.
Such registration must be completed by 1 February 2018 (24.00CET) at the latest. This deadline cannot be extended.
44.02 One player from the above quota of three who has been fielded in a UEFA club competition group stage match for another club in the current season may exceptionally be registered, provided that the player has not been fielded:
- in the same competition for another club; or
- for another club that is currently in the same competition.
Should Sánchez be registered, he could line up away to Sevilla on 21 February.
He will also have sights on a return to the top of the list of Chile’s all-time top UEFA Champions League appearance-makers, and could even become the first Chilean to win Europe’s premier club competition.