Can Theo Walcott start producing the goods right after returning from his knee injury? by SE
Theo Walcott, after enduring an excruciating 9-month period due to the knee injury he picked up in January, isn’t too long from returning to action for Arsenal, which will be crucial to the North Londoners’ prospects this season. Unlike last season, the Gunners have been far too pedestrian in their passing, and Walcott’s pace and propensity to retain width could just be the answer to Arsenal’s tethering problems. However, given the length of time that the Englishman has been out of the game, can be start producing rollicking displays from the off?
Walcott would have done a fair bit of running, in addition to the strengthening exercises during the last one month, before he steps out in Arsenal colours in a competitive match. As a result, the Englishman shouldn’t have too much of a discomfort from carrying out his positional tasks, either as a winger or striker. Now, Walcott, in no way, would play the whole of 90 minutes during the initial period after returning from his knee injury; thus, he should be able to give his all for Arsenal in the cameo roles Arsene Wenger puts him into, starting this weekend against Burnley at the Emirates.
For Walcott to start making an impact for Arsenal right after returning from the long injury layoff, the Gunners have to put themselves into good positions in their upcoming games, making it easier for Walcott to find the 25 and 30-minute cameo roles without scrutiny. Wenger, in his post-match thoughts after Arsenal’s 2-0 win over Sunderland, was quoted as saying that the nature and state of the game was too tight for his liking, which retrospectively was the reason behind Walcott not finding those 10-15 minutes towards the end of the game at the Stadium of Light.
Mentally Walcott shouldn’t be too suspect in getting his act together, as and when he returns to action and starts making his time on the pitch count. It’s the physical side, as always, that might take the Englishman 3-4 games to get up to speed, which might inhibit him from producing his very best for Arsenal. Having said that, don’t be surprised if Walcott turns up for the last 20-25 minutes of a game and gets into the groove straightaway, as the cameo roles are designed to do just that.