Arsenal have lost a number of key men in recent years with Robin Van Persie and Alex Song the two that flew the nest this summer. Gael Clichy, Samr Nasri, Cesc Fabregas, Patrick Vieira, Thierry Henry, Marc Overmars and Emmanuel Petit are the obvious examples of Arsene Wenger’s wanderers and it is looking increasingly likely that Theo Walcott will join that list.
Arsene Wenger admitted it would be hard to play the England international during his contract wrangling’s with a deadline of April next year being set in terms of likeliness of a Theo stay.
So come January should Arsenal just cash in on the forward?
His pace is electric of that there is no question but his position has often been a huge doubt; is he a winger or a striker. Originally Wenger even admitted he eventually saw Walcott playing through the middle. However you have to feel that thought process has changed; more than likely due to a growing disappointment in his development.
Theo is one of those players that can turn a game on its head in a heartbeat, ask Barcelona or Sweden, but can also just be utterly infuriating and frustrating with a lacklustre touch and crossing ability his biggest faults during off days.
His highlights are his electric pace and occasional lethal finish but you have to feel, with the emergence of Oxlade-Chamberlain and even the up and comers such as Serge Gnabry that Walcott’s time at The Emirates is up and Arsenal should recoup as much of his transfer fee as possible in January before losing him for free at the seasons conclusion.
He will obviously command interest from around the globe with Liverpool, Chelsea, Inter Milan and Juventus reportedly interested and on a personal level I think it would be brilliant for Walcott to go and play abroad in either Italy or Spain and fly the flag for England.
Given his chance up front his pace would prove untouchable against many a centre back and he should make great use of it before it disappears; Shaun Wright-Phillips pace appears to have deserted him and he now toils for first team football at QPR, a destiny that should hopefully not befall Theo.
Time in Europe could help develop his game so the time comes when pace is not his only weapon he may have developed more worldly attributes to haunt defenders with.
Either way after six years at The Emirates time is surely running out on Theo Walcott’s Arsenal career.
What do you think should Arsenal cash-in on Theo Walcott?
image: © Ronnie Macdonald