Last season Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain burst into our collective footballing consciousness as he turned in a number of eye catching performances for Arsenal, the best coming against AC Milan in the Champions League.
The Ox’s pace, strength and skill on the ball had fans throwing about superlatives like it was going out of fashion and with good reason, the boy is a fantastic talent and at the age of 19 he has already accomplished one of his life goal’s by appearing on the cover of Fifa 13.
Roy Hodgson included him in the England squad that would go to the 2012 European Championships and he performed well there, too, despite the Three Lions being eliminated at the quarter final stage.
This season has been a different story, however, and The Ox has been struggling to find any kind of form or playing time, as Arsene Wenger is intent on playing Santi Cazorla on the left side of his 4-3-3 attack (with Theo Walcott on the right).
The Ox did sign a five year contract extension which means he will be able to settle in north London and his talent nutured and developed.
He has only managed two goals all season long but it is vital that no fan forgets that Oxlade-Chamberlain is one of the most exciting English talents, and there is no doubt that he will develop into a very, very good player.
Wenger has spoken of how, eventually, he will use The Ox in a central position and in that brilliant game against AC Milan that is where he was deployed.
Wherever he ends up playing on the pitch look for Oxlade-Chamberlain to bounce back from this disappointing second season and thrust himself into the limelight next season, adding another threat to Arsenal’s diverse attack.
Jerry Van Wav