Wenger finally explains why Walcott is on the bench….

The Arsenal striker Theo Walcott was out injured for a full year but now he is fit and ready Arsene Wenger seems happy for him to sit on the bench a bit longer until he is forced to make changes to his starting line-up. Due to his continued absense, Wenger was asked by journalists if Walcott was being used sparingly because he has not fully recovered from his injury. “He is all right now.” Le Prof replied. “With the cruciate, before the age of 25 you come back and you continue to develop normally,” he said. “A cruciate after 28 is much more problematic.

“No [there will not be any long-term issues]. He is a natural athlete and a sprinter, and a very straight-line sprinter. It means every shock he gets is at full power.

“He is ready now to play games. But when a player has been out for a year, when he comes back he always thinks he is ready. When you speak to him three weeks later and ask him if he thinks he really was ready [before] he says, ‘Now I realise, no’.

“I have been holding him back because he has been out for a long time and for the fact there is intense competition.”

Many readers have been surmising that the England international was being punished for dragging his heels in the ongoing contract extension talks. Walcott will be entering his final year in the summer, and Wenger believes that the negotiations will be long, just as they were three years ago. “We have started very early with him. He is very quick on the pitch, but off the pitch not always,”

Wenger also made it clear that Theo will not be an automatic starter for Arsenal any more, and he will have to wait for his opportunities. “I always wanted to keep him and I still want to keep him now. I want him to stay and be a regular player and fight for his place, but no matter where you go if it is a big club you have to compete for your place,”

I wonder if that last statement is in response to Walcott asking for assurances that he will play. I also wonder that if Theo doesn’t “sign da ting” before the end of the season will Wenger sell him on, rather than let the talks go on after the summer break. Like last time?


For the first time this weekend, we will be using a new phone app for Android or Apple for the Arsenal fans to interact on Matchday, and this important game looks perfect to give it a first run out. Everyone can download the app on this link, and then join the Fan Club called Just Arsenal News. If you are asked for a code to join our Fan Club it is 1942M.

Lets get lots of JustArsenal regulars signed up and we’ll give it a test run on Saturday!

Tags Walcott Wenger


  1. Why is he always stressful to re new his contract, if he doesn’t want to sign, he should pls go.

      1. Remember when we last signed him we were supposedly going to play him up top more frequently. If that is true well then we went back on our word. Also i have a suspicion that manc could be sniffing round, they are maybe losing one of their English quota so could need another and also their team could do with an injection of pace and or youth. Wouldnt be surprised by another cole che senario.

  2. With the thought of wenger saying theo hasnt an automatic place in the starting 11, this could make him work hard and fight for a starting place, competition is good for the team, look at the goal keeping dept with ospina keeping szczesny out of no 1 spot! Theo is still part of our plans and i personally dont think wenger wants to sell him! I do believe he will sign a new contract! Coyg!

  3. last time too before he signed a new contract he was most of the time on the bench + Walcott’s new contract offer is less than his current £100k-a-week contract, acc to reports hope he doesn’t leave & of he does wenger should go for pedro

  4. just pay him what he wants….Walcott is very underpaid

    with the new tv deal alone ….we can afford 500k a week for every player

      1. @Rahman, I have this picture in my head of what you might look like, i imagine you are all alone in a pitch dark room, you have newspaper clippings covering your walls and on them clippings are old and new transfer stories. Sweat dripping from your brow and a wet towel placed upon your head, you look around at the exotic names on your walls before saying the horror the horror as you gaze upon the Arsenal team sheet placed within your dartboard.

        Im guessing you look a little like Brando/Apocalypse now.

    1. @Robin, not his primary job, and don’t forget when he is on the pitch, the opponent’s LB are normally not joining the attack, which is another form of defense. I will like him to improve defensively though, despite the fact that its not his primary work.

  5. Come on gunners! Lets take care of business and beat west ham, 3 priceless is crucial for us in the fight for a top 4 spot! My other 2 wishes are man u and spurs drawing and chelsea dropping points also! Coyg!

  6. can see walcott playing on the bench but cant see him playing for mancity. mancity weakness this season has been right wing and if walcott reinforces that position for them then i suppose mancity can form devastating attacking unit. so we should try everything possible not to lose him for nothing!!

  7. Jack should worry less about Coq and more about his own future, cause at the moment he doesn’t have one.

  8. In d past our top players kept leaving us and criticized our lack of ambition and inability to buy top talent. And if dat was d reason y Walcott delayed on his contract extension last time dere shyd b mo issue ant dis anymore bcoz we hav a title challenging team now( nearly dere). But since he has found less game time his reasons may change for delaying contract extension. However, Wenger’s msg in d conference clearly states dat u wil find competition at every top club so I am positive dat Walcott will stay but for how long dat I don’t know.

  9. the only club realistically that might want him is liverpool or chelsea
    chelsea have just signed cuadrado so he wont go there
    liverpool in good form and have lallana,markovic,ibe etc

    1. lol mourinho doesn’t like players who don’t work hard

      City may want him if they consider selling navas because they need home grown players. They will go for song or schnederlin asŵell

  10. Overhyped overrated overpaid….. An English di Maria….No top team in Spain Germany or EPL will take him …. Spurs might but that says it all …Sell and bring in quality attacking option who has more to offer than a bit of pace ..

  11. With Sterling stalling on a new deal at Liverpool, and as we all know Walcott is a Liverpool fan, he has one year left of his contract and Liverpool showed an interest in him the last time, so they sell Sterling and buy Walcott for peanuts, we then don’t gain anything from the whole transfer instead of weakening ourselves and strengthening our rivals.

    Walcott gives us something different, when fit the guy gets at least 12 goals and 10 assists a season from the wing, he might not be flashy like The Ox or Sanchez but he gives us something different, we should have as many different kinds of players in the squad to vary our playing style, The Ox is so inconsistent, he will have 1 good games and will have 4 average ones after. I like The Ox a lot but Walcott wins us games, he scores lots and assist lots while The Ox hardly scores or assists. So lets not get carried away. They all give us something different.

  12. seems to me Walcott was that young promising kid whose carrer is starting to pass him by, if he moves on, say to a big club, we may not see him anymore…

  13. As a fellOw jamaican I would love to get sterling To replace him and poldi if they both want out.

    1.of similar quality with world class potential
    2.wouldnt demand 100k
    3.could thrive of sanchez like he did with Suarez
    4.home grown has many international friends at arsenal

  14. Walcott is a great player. Today he devastated West Hams defence and was unlucky not to get a penalty and managed to flop his one other good chance. His movement off the ball dwarfs players like Welbeck and despite not being involved in the goals, many of our best chances came from his movement. Anyone saying he is overrated and overpaid clearly has no concept of how much the wages of players are these days and does not realise the work Theo does off the ball offensively. My 1 complaint is his ability to track back, but much like Ozil, he is a player you have to adjust your team to fit instead of a player to drop because of their defensive frailties.

    As I said in other articles the reason he was not starting/playing is injury and competition combined. Wenger summed it up nicely. Theo is in no rush to sign and wants to know he is still part of the team and won’t be passed up for Ox, Alexis and Welbeck and left on the bench. I think that’s fair. If he fights for his place and is getting games, he’ll sign up in the summer I’m sure.

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