When Arsene Wenger revealed the latest Arsenal injury news, the doubts over the fitness of the two England international stars Danny Welbeck and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain may have been bad news for them and the manager, but one Gunner who may have been less upset is Theo Walcott.
With two of our regular forwards out of action, Walcott has a great chance of starting the FA cup fourth round clash away to Brighton on Sunday and I’m sure that the 25-year old is desperate to start his second game for Arsenal since damaging his cruciate ligaments over a year ago. That other game was the 3rd round victory over Hull City and his final game last season was also in the FA cup, so Walcott seems tied up with the cup competition.
Unfortunately for him, especially as one of the longest serving players in the current Arsenal squad, Theo’s injury caused him to miss that first trophy success in nine years. But as Walcott told Arsenal Player, that disappointment has made him even more keen to help the Gunners progress this season in our attempt to retain the trophy.
He said, “I remember a few years ago we won 3-2 there. Me and Jack came off the bench and we managed to win it in the end, but it was a tough game.
“It’s a lovely stadium, the changing rooms are fantastic and the fans were absolutely brilliant and the pitch is great as well. It is going to be a great test and Chris Hughton is manager now – and he is a very good manager.
“A lot of people say some players have lost some love for [the competition] but not for me at all. I am sure our players, having won it last year, will want to hold on to the trophy so it is important to start well.
“For me personally it would be fantastic [to do well in the cup] because of the disappointment of last year. That is something I am desperate to achieve this year.
“It was hard to take definitely, missing [the final]. But it is one of those things that happen in football and things happen for a reason.”
The manager does have a couple of options in Joel Campbell and Mesut Ozil, but I think he should go for Walcott as he is potentially the most dangerous forward of the three and he needs the time on the pitch. Add to this his determination to do well in the cup competition and starting the pacy Englishman is a no-brainer. Do you agree?