Arsenal star Alexis Sanchez has revealed he used to play as a goalkeeper in jail when he was growing up.

Sanchez, whose future at Emirates Stadium remains uncertain, has developed into one of the world’s best attackers, starring for Udinese, Barcelona and Chile as well as the Gunners.

But it was all so different for him as a youngster, so desperate to play that he would feature as a shot-stopper in games at the local jail.

“I wanted to be a professional footballer from when I was small,” the 28-year-old told Arsenal Player.

“My mental approach was always to win and to go as far as possible playing football.

“I was always playing in tournaments and initially I played in goal. I was happy as long as I was playing football. I played with older people all the time – many of whom I really liked.

“[I played] in the street, but we also used to go to the local jail to play. We played with the people there on a dirt pitch, and I played in goal.”

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