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Arsenal attacker compares himself to the game's biggest stars

By Alex Taylor

Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez believes he has the same ability as Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

The pair have held a monopoly over the Ballon d’Or award for 8 years since Ronaldo first won football’s greatest individual honour in 2008.

The attacking duo are widely thought of as the best players in the world with both forwards helping their clubs win an array of European and domestic titles over the last 10 years.

“I have reached a level where I can compete with great players,” Sanchez was quoted in Spanish publication Sport. “I do not feel inferior to anybody. I liken [my qualities] to Messi and Ronaldo. I have the same abilities as them.”

Sanchez, 27, will be all too familiar with both Ronaldo and Messi having played 141 matches for Barcelona in La Liga.

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Since moving to Arsenal the Gunners winger has bagged 43 goals and 25 assists in 96 appearances.

In the same period, Ronaldo has scored 112 goals and provided 37 assists in 102 games at Real Madrid while Messi has notched 102 goals and 60 assists in 110 games for Barcelona.

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger will be hoping one of his chief attacking threats will be fresh and raring to go as his side enter a difficult period of fixtures in September.

The north London outfit begin the month against Southampton this weekend before traveling to France to play Paris-Saint Germain three days later.

In other Arsenal team news, Wilshere has held talks with Wenger about signing a new three-year deal in north London when he returns from his loan spell at Bournemouth.