Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez has been pictured back in training after his high-profile injury scare. The 27-year-old was ruled out of Chile's recent 2018 World Cup qualifying draw against Colombia after suffering a minor muscle problem, although he remained in Santiago for treatment with La Roja hopeful that their most influential attacking talent would recover in time for Tuesday night's visit of Uruguay.
Chile's decision to retain Sanchez was apparently against the wishes of Arsenal, who were eager for the player to return to London for assessment ahead of two crucial matches against Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain.
"I got a text last night [to say] that he has a hamstring injury," a concerned Arsene Wenger told beIN SPORTS on Thursday. "The team from Chile has travelled without him and they kept him to try and get him fit to play Uruguay for the second game on Tuesday night.
"We have to get access for our medical staff to the MRI scan to see what grade it is, how bad it is and make absolutely sure they don't make any suicidal decision that could harm his future for two or three months.
"That is absolutely important. It's a grey area between the national team and the club team and of course they look at their own results, which I can understand, but we have to preserve the health of Alexis Sanchez. He always wants to play and that's where it is a more sensitive case because he's always ready to play even when injured."
The reigning Copa America champions, currently languishing outside of the four automatic spots in Conmebol qualifying with eight matches left to play, are also under pressure to exercise similar caution with Arturo Vidal after the Bayern Munich midfielder was stretchered off in stoppage time against Colombia after feeling the lingering effects of an apparent adductor problem.
"Bayern Munich are very worried about Arturo Vidal's health," Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said. "We urge the Chilean Football Association to deal with this situation responsibly and sensibly. It should be a given that the player's health is top priority."
In what is sure to come as a sizable relief to Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola ahead of next weekend's Premier League trip to Crystal Palace, first-choice goalkeeper Claudio Bravo also took part in training on Saturday and is expected to retain his place in Juan Antonio Pizzi's starting XI.
The Chile captain made several impressive saves against Colombia, but his evening was ended prematurely in Barranquilla due to a hip injury suffered during a collision with Santiago Arias. Veteran colleague Johnny Herrera would have deputised in his absence.