After the introduction of the new Arsenal players Carzorla, Podolski and Giroud, along with the departure of his good friends Robin van Persie and Alex Song, a few question marks are appearing over and probably in Theo Walcott's head.
There was talk during the transfer window that the right wing/striking speed boat might be the next out of the door following stalling contract talks and rumors circulating that the following teams were interested in his services : Inter, Juventus, Chelsea, Paris St Germain, Man City, Liverpool & even Spartak Moscow.
This is the 7th year at The Emirates for the 23 year old and it's fair to say he's had his critics. It could be viewed that he's not set the world alight or lived up to the hype (thanks to Sven) during his time however it must be remembered that he's had his fair share of injuries during this time. Also, he's STILL only 23 and is unbelievably only 3 years away from his testimonial. He can't have been that bad over this time else he would have been phased out of reckoning by Wenger. The Frenchman has done this to many a young prospect in his time already, remember Mark Randall, Jay Emmanuel Thomas and that guy called David Bentley?
Here's a video of some of Theo Walcott's best bits at Arsenal.
So where's Walcott been this season? Well he has only made 1 start for the Gunners so far but he has made 2 further substitute appearances. Just to clarify for the haters, that's 3 out of 4 games available for Arsenal he has participated in. He was also struck down by the virus that swept through the England camp this past international break so it was a surprise to see him rise from the bench to net against Southampton this past weekend.
This season will see Walcott unusually have to fight for his place in the team. This is due to the new arrivals mentioned previously, the rise of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and the resurgence of Gervinho. The names in the 'available' column far outweigh those spaces to fill on the team sheet. This can surely only be a good thing for Arsenal?
All barring the season crippling injury spell that Arsenal annually encounter, the competition for places in the team will keep not only Mr Walcott on his toes, but it should drive the rest of the team to perform at their peaks. This will lead to higher quality on the pitch and on the bench - and allow Wenger to rotate his side with confidence.
This new look Arsenal almost makes use of the 'false 9' as mentioned here so this makes Gervinho, Podolski, Giroud, The Ox and Walcott all interchangeable along that front line. Not to mention the other squad members including Chamakh and Arshavin who are still yet to fully enter the fray...
Walcott's lost his automatic place in the team... with time on his contract ticking down the question is does he want to stick around to fight for it?
Rose like a Salmon