Alexis Sanchez completed his move from Arsenal to Manchester United this week but reports on Thursday claimed he may have inadvertently missed a doping test during the process.
Widespread national newspaper reports on Thursday night – following on from an initial report in Spain – said the Chile international may have fallen foul of the Football Association’s ‘whereabouts’ rule by allegedly not being present for a test on Monday.
However, that was the day he was completing his high-profile switch from London to Manchester, opening the door to the possibility of genuine confusion as to his whereabouts.
There is no suggestion of wrongdoing by Sanchez or the clubs. Both Arsenal and United declined to comment on Thursday, as did the FA.
As part of the FA’s anti-doping guidelines, players are advised to notify the governing body if they are due to be absent from a scheduled training session.
As Ben Rumsby writes in the Daily Telegraph:
‘There is no suggestion Chile star Sánchez sought to evade a drugs test and it is possible he would have been unaware where he should have been at that time for testing purposes.
‘That is because clubs have assumed responsibility for informing the authorities of each of their players’ whereabouts.
‘If there has been any breach of the rules, it is almost certain to have been as the result of an administrative blunder linked to Sánchez’s transfer from Arsenal to United.’