Why Theo Walcott MUST be Arsenal’s main striker


Before I begin, I will like to state categorically that I do not know football more than Arsene Wenger. None of us does. When we blog about football, we only do it as observers. Of course as an observer, you sometimes see things unfold in ways that the manager of a football team may not necessarily consider significant. So this is what I have observed so far watching Arsenal since we bought Olivier Giroud as our main central striker. There are two sides to this Arsenal team.

Depending on what kind of striker plays up top, Arsenal can be fluid, sharp, quick and unpredictable or we can be slow, nervous, lethargic and predictable. By all considerations, we prepared well for the start of this season. We won all our preseason games and conceded only one goal. Heck, only last week, we beat the Champions Chelsea in the Community Shield tournament and lifted the trophy. In that game, we were sharp, switched on, mature, defended in numbers and took our chances when we had it. We defended for our lives and never doubted ourselves. And victory was ours. We even got touted afterwards as league contenders afterwards. So what changed one week later?

This is where I regret to announce that I will inevitably dabble into the endless debating cycle of a certain Olivier Giroud versus Theo Walcott. Yes folks, it always comes down to these two players of late and we cannot get away from it. Depending on which of these strikers you start in a game, you will get very different performances from this same team. Case in point. Towards the ending of last season, the goals dried up. At the time, Olivier Giroud led our forward line. Alexis Sanchez, our South American fireball, had run himself into the ground and was practically limping over the finish line after carrying the team on his shoulders for much of the season. It was at this time that we drew a blank against Chelsea at home, did the same against Sunderland at home and lost to Swansea. In those games, we did everything but score a goal. We were terribly predictable. In our game against Swansea, our former goalie, Lukas Fabianski was made to look like a world class goal keeper. All our shots on target were aimed directly at him and he picked them off one by one as if it was match practice. We were that jaded, uninventive and predictable. Enter Theo Walcott. Walcott came in as a late substitute in the league game against Manchester United that we were losing and he got us a goal by scaring the United defense into scoring themselves.

Suddenly, there was hope that the goals would come back. One week after thrashing Chelsea 3-1 at Stamford Bridge, a confident West Brom headed to the Emirates for another giant killing. Unfortunately for them, a certain Theo Walcott was started as central striker. We blew them away in that game and Theo scored a hat trick in an exhilarating performance that ended 4-1. Suddenly, a goal drought transformed into a goal glut. The next game was the FA Cup final against Aston Villa. Arsene Wenger uncharacteristically started Walcott yet again as striker and he scored the opening goal in what ended up a brutal one sided rout. We won 4-0.

Now I know that you are all aware of the history lesson that I am recounting here. The problem however is that Arsene Wenger is yet to show that he has learned from our recent history. Walcott and Giroud offer very different things to this Arsenal team. Walcott is quick, mobile, darts behind defenses, can create his own chances and shoots on sight. He also has a better shot to goal ratio than Giroud. Giroud on the other hand is strong, slow, holds the ball up well and offers the aerial threat you will expect from a target man his size. Unfortunately for him, he is also predictable, cannot create his own chances and his lack of movement can be stifling for our team. But when he is being flanked by wingers who are in form and running riot, we manage to get by.

For the millionth time, the Arsenal game is built on movement and quick passes. That movement is best created by a mobile central striker or winger with Walcott-like skill sets. When we have this movement and speed, we are unplayable and hard to track. We play with confidence, create more chances and are unpredictable. When we lack movement and width, we get narrow, predictable, easy to defend against and lose our confidence. That is also when we begin to make aimless side passes that amount to nothing. In his post-match press conference after our West Ham loss, Arsene Wenger said something very interesting. He admitted for the first time that we were nervous. Really Arsene? Oh, you noticed? Good! However, he failed to go further by stating what made us nervous. Can anybody here guess the cause of our nervousness? Anyone? Okay since I cannot hear you all the way from Lagos where I am writing this article, I will put forward my own answer. We were nervous because this team has no faith in Olivier Giroud and when your team has no faith in you, it shows.

Just how did we go from beating the best team in the premier league just one week ago to losing to a mid-table team by two nil? 24 hours ago, we were going to win the league. 24 hours later, we are playing catch up all over again. I have my own theory of what went wrong and I have put it forward. This Arsenal team has no faith in Olivier Giroud and when you are a central striker and your team does not believe in you, the team suffers. If you doubt it, watch their body language when he starts a game. Walcott might have been anonymous in the Chelsea game but his team never doubted him. Again, the evidence is in the way they played. You are all welcome to make your own contributions but I will like to end this article by echoing what King Henry himself has been bold enough to concede. Olivier Giroud is an okay striker but with him upfront, we will not win anything. A central striker is the offensive leader of his team. He is at the forefront of the battle field. Even when he doesn’t score, he can still inspire a win by doing a lot of things right on the pitch – and that includes giving his team belief. In his last season in Arsenal, Robin Van Persie was that guy. He gave us belief. We may hate him now but he was the perfect example of the kind of striker that I am talking about. Cesc and Nasri had left. Confidence was low. We made a mad dash and bought four average players that amounted to little. It was Robin and Walcott who led the line and dragged us into Champions league qualification. When Robin left, Theo led us brilliantly the following season and scored 21 goals mostly as a substitute coming back from injury. Does Olivier Giroud inspire that kind of belief in this Arsenal team? Is it a coincidence that when he lost his starting position to Walcott, the goals came flowing back again and now that he has being reinstated, we are back to our goal drought? The facts speak for themselves and I am not a Giroud hater.
Discuss. ….


Uche Edochie

Tags Giroud Walcott


    1. Neither Giroud nor Walcott should be our main striker they’re simply not good enough,the way Man City dismantled West Brom shows we have lots of work to do in order to challenge for the title

      1. Precisely this. It’s our CF issue in a nutshell, whilst we can all squabble over who’s better and for what reasons the fact is neither are top grade.

        One question sums it all up, who is our best CF, the guaranteed name on the team sheet? Exactly.

        Ask that about the others and what do you get?
        United – Rooney
        City – Aguero
        Chelsea – Costa

        All have genuine top class forwards and we all know when they’re fit they start – we have two good options that work for some games/teams and not for others. I think Giroud is better than Theo, but he’s not the calibre of ST to be leading our line. Simple.

        NOT our only concern however, it must be said.

        1. I agree that some people will never learn but, there are also some people who are too stubborn to what to accept they were or are wrong.. Because of such a person’s attitude, Arsenal will never win the Premier League again. Theo only has speed, he is never a finished. He kisses 10 times more than he scores, plus he hasn’t got the strength or no-how of holding up the ball. Check out the Chelsea game. Giroud can hold up the ball and bring people into play but he is too slow and not sharp enough but I still rate him. If he had a better number 10 and not a number 10 who disappears every game and people still call world class. Ozil is minus one. Ramsey is too selfish and constantly wants to score alone while Carzola is a sideways move, he doesn’t drive forward like our beloved Jack, who Wenger doen’t like using even when he is fit. Jack should be our number 10 and they should allow some of our new kids on the block eg Ameobi, olaide and Chuba. All these young guys are fearless and are eager to impress + they will run all day. look at the Ox, Hector B and Gibbs, They all drive hard , forward and they all have pace.

      2. one thing I knew is disturbing d team is btw Ramsey nd santi
        ….if arsene can’t bench Ramsey he shud bench cazorla nd let Ramsey strt frm midfield we av many options upfront,, I see no reason walcot dd nt strt d match….turnup wenger

        1. Theo has a lot of speed but absolutely lacks finishing. He misses more than he can score because his finishing is terrible. Most importantly he can’t hold the ball up for others to come into play, he is too weak. I agree that Cazola should sit down and allow Ramsey to take control of the midfield. Ramsey has more steel

          1. Theo is not a striker and will never be one!
            i get that some people tend to fall in love with some players whether they are good or not and Theo is not a footballer is runner 1st









      1. Ozil disappears. People need to be honest and stop coming up with excuses for this guy. This is the English Premier League, not the German Bundesliega. Not everybody can hack it in the Premiership. It looks easy on TV but on the pitch, its a different ball game. eg DI Maria Man Utd, Falcao Man Utd now Chelsea, Balotelli, Shevchenko all World class players, big names in the game, but they could not hack it in the EPL. Its too tough, no one gives you time on the ball and you need to be a real terrier or a bully to be a successful defender in the top teams in the EPL Per Mt is not good enough, too slow and not rugged enough. Check this line – up

        Sanchez ——-Giroud ——– The OX
        Olaide (New Kid who shone in the Asia cup)
        Ramsey —————Coquelin
        Ospina (keeper)

        1. @Ironman, Olaide?! do you mean Rene Adelaide? lol. I have a Ganaian friend named olaide. Anyway Adelaide isn’t ready for first team. But iwobi is.

    3. I agree that some people will never learn but, there are also some people who are too stubborn to what to accept they were or are wrong.. Because of such a person’s attitude, Arsenal will never win the Premier League again. Theo only has speed, he is never a finished. He kisses 10 times more than he scores, plus he hasn’t got the strength or no-how of holding up the ball. Check out the Chelsea game. Giroud can hold up the ball and bring people into play but he is too slow and not sharp enough but I still rate him. If he had a better number 10 and not a number 10 who disappears every game and people still call world class. Ozil is minus one. Ramsey is too selfish and constantly wants to score alone while Carzola is a sideways move, he doesn’t drive forward like our beloved Jack, who Wenger doen’t like using even when he is fit. Jack should be our number 10 and they should allow some of our new kids on the block eg Ameobi, olaide and Chuba. All these young guys are fearless and are eager to impress + they will run all day. look at the Ox, Hector B and Gibbs, They all drive hard , forward and they all have pace.

    4. If I should ask u all, how many top team central forwards scored in this EPL day one? Costa? Aguero? Rooney? Kane? I prefer to go with Arsene’s excuse, “the whole team failed”. That 2nd goal was supposed to be closed down by our defenders. Shit happens, so lets move on

  1. AW doesn’t know how to discipline our players…Giroud should stick to being a CF and not try to become a wingers esp since he doesn’t have the best of dribbling skills and in a game where we playing with 1 CF…who is he expecting to cross for if he’s on the wings.

  2. Walcott, Giroud and Welbeck

    they are all not good enough to led our attack….

    spend some money and sign some quality strikers to led and score goals…

    1. You do not need to be a rocket scientist to know that Arsenal need a world class strike who can put fear in the heart of opposition defenders, which would enable the other guys with skill from midfield to break through at will. We have the midfielders, with the exception of Ozil, we just don’t have the striker. Ozil is a pure waste of time. He disappears too often to be a number 10 for Arsenal. Is it only me that see’s this? Is everybody else blind to the fact that Ozil is just not good enough for Arsenal. Look at West Hams Dimitri , he ran our defence ragged while a 16 year old kid kept Ozil locked up. As for Ramsey, its about time people say the truth, great player but too selfish, not a team player. Check out most of the games he plays in, there are loads of times he SHOULD have passed to an overlapping partner in a better position but he never does. It happened twice in the West Ham game. With the exception of Sanchez, Wiltshire and the OX every other midfielder goes side ways, they never drive forward. West ham passed it around at the back and then suddenly drove forward. We did too much sideways movement

  3. long for nothing article.we arsenal are wounded hence need shirt articles.what makes your article even more frightening us your headline.I wish it were ARSENAL SHOULD BUY A NEW STRIKER AND USE THEO AS A BACKUP.but telling us that Theo should be our main striker means you not even dreaming if a new striker

    1. Just signed a new contract. It’s Benz or bust it would seem, but it’s pretty hopeful to suggest he’s gonna turn us into title contenders alone.

      Seen many moan about Giroud but we have others of similar ability who can take his place, same goes for Rambo who doesn’t deserve his place right now….but Coquelin is suspect af yet what are the options in replacing him? Oh…

      Still yet to see why Schneiderlin/Vidal were so easy to pass on. West Ham was further evidence that a DM who is poor on the ball and doesn’t distribute well puts a heavy strain on our entire attacking game. When Coquelin doesn’t have Cazorla beside him to take over we all see how quickly it comes apart. He’s a Mikel type player who’s been hyped beyond measure by most Arsenal fans. To rely on him in such a position is suicidal.

  4. hello fellow gooners. this is my first post! I just wanna say that i was appalled by our performance on the weekend i got up at 5.30 am to see our boys misplacing passes, no rhythm, no focus in attack it was truly not an accident. On the other hand i would support Theo starting for OG at Palace we need to mix it up abit. And OG would make a great supersub (begin Benzema response) Debuchy was awful hope Hector is fit. Uphill all the way so goes the Arsenal day

  5. But he holds up play, he doesn’t have to score, he holds up play and that is why he has not scored a hat trick because he must hold up play for others to score and he defends well, who needs goals if your striker can defend them.

  6. I feel really down when I see how the fans easily change their minds game by game … You cannot define who is class and who is sh*t either because of your ignorance or because of your biasness …
    As an example, I have been saying Giroud is a bad option to lead our majestic attack (is it so difficult to see that) and I got so many sticks for saying that, but after one bad (bad is usual but really bad) performance from Giroud all of sudden all of you calling for his head …
    Another example is Mert, he is far to be good enough, it is only Kos who makes him look good … If Kos had a bad day with Mert playing good, I give Mert credit, but I never change my mind that he still not good to be starter …

    Pathetic fans …

  7. We continuously bashing Giroud only. I think its time to look after our record breaking signing Ozil. He has come with a world class tag but is he up to the expectation? Is he creating clear goal scoring opportunity for our strikers. He is no 10 for us. Look how dominant David Silva was yesterday. I agree that Giroud is no where near Auguro or Costa but do you really thing that Ozil is better than Silva. Our no 10 has to dominate matches. No t being dominated by a 16 yrs Old Oxford. We say we need 20 Plus striker
    How many assists and goals do you expect from Ozil this season. Minimul 15 assist and 10 goals in PL. If he can not deliver this season, I want him to be sold and buy a striker.
    Sanchej should be moved to center where I believe he can damage opposition. Walcott and OX to occupy the wings

  8. The dry spell last year was on our whole team playing lackluster when we already sewn up either 2nd or 3rd place.
    Theo offers little against a team that is parking a bus which is what was happening in the second half. Funny I remember him not contributing anything and Sanchez having the ball stolen from him on 3 separate occasions because he tried to dribble dribble dribble.
    West Ham were very good defensively and we weren’t. That was the story of the game.
    On to the next and btw looking at some of the games this week Arsenal were not the only top team to struggle on the attacking side. MU at home had I believe 1 shot on goal and an own goal to see them through.

  9. if walcott is our main striker then i dont think we will win the title, we need some one who is experienced and proven there to win the league. walcott is good enough for top 4. look our both strikers giroud and walcott are good but we cant win the league with them but somehow to win with them our midfield has to score alot of goals and especially ozil needs to step up !!!

  10. For me I think our primary problem is AW. Is he a good manager? Yes. The problem with AW is the lack of motivation he gives to his players. No hunger to fight. No hunger to win.
    Also he seems oblivious to the needs of the team (CF DM) and the players who are not good enough (Mert, Flam, Artete…..).
    I love Arsenal but someone needs to help wenger, he looks lost and clueless.

  11. why cant people get this,,,,,,Walcott is no CF .he is a winger. Even my toothless grand mum knows this . maamamia

  12. Theo is no where near a deadly CF which we need badly. someone hu can take on players, shoot , curl, and give us dat fear factor.

    this is simple maths. Giroud n Walcott are second choice strickers

  13. Theo is far better than Giroud, however, he is not good enough to be our main striker but that doesn’t mean he’s incapable of scoring 20+ goals a season. I truly believe he can and the only reason he hasn’t is bcoz of he’s injuries and of course AW not using him tactically.

    Ozil must just GO!!! nd Rocisky should be given a chance.

    As for Benzima…i’m not really convinced, i would rather we went for Lewandoski (Only If)

  14. If coq doesn’t plays good d dm position is going to be far more problematic than the striker position. Wenger really messed up by not signing schniederlein.
    And Gabriel may come into the starting 11 sooner rather then later.

  15. Evry gud playr we wr linkd with sm fans thot wasnt gud 4 arsenal…j.martinez augbmyng scheneidrln higuain among others…now wats happenin? We wr even seein articles comparing giroud n diego costa haha

  16. Why can’t we just buy a striker??? Why do we always have to gamble? We are a big club but we act like a championship club.Charge the highest ticket prices but spend less than Watford who have just been promoted. Until Wenger leaves there is no hope

  17. The team has no faith in giroud? Really

    Perhaps there is no faith, but perhaps it is the team having no faith in AW?

    I mean he plays people out of position, in a midfield system packed with similar players and no natural wingers and he plays people that are not deserving/or people that are deserving. Basically, too many wrong decisions that effect the equilibrium of the team.

    The problem is deeper than having mistrust in certain players who you may feel are not up to the standard.

    I mean if I was Santi I would be looking around the pitch at quiet a few (DW ANYONE?) team mates as a two footed, skilful and effective footballer who usually delivers (when played in his proper decision).

    1. The major point of my rambling was that players do not like being played out of their favoured roles as they usually become less effective. No matter what they tell the media, this is the case!


      1. Ok… So I think the problem you’ve highlighted is only going to exist for a week.
        Chambo’s looking up for it despite a few lapses of concentration. Sanchez is Sanchez, he’s going to win one of the flanks back just a matter of when.
        So that leaves Ramsey, Cazorla and Ozil fighting for two central positions. Now, you highlight the fact that any of those names playing on the flanks probably isn’t where they want to be, and I agree with you. But do you think any of those names would prefer to sit and be used as a sub??

        1. Probably not.
          But that is the issue here. You can’t as much as AW would like try to please everyone play them all together at the expense of your ability to have a balanced and therefore effective football team IMO.

          1. Just to add I am a product designer by profession and to meet the needs of clients I produce products to the requirements of the client and the intended product functionality.

            So substitute designing for products with designing a football team to be effective. AW is adding imbalance to his ‘product’ (the team) in a way that does not make it fit for purpose (to win).

            Perhaps an overly simplified comparison but hopefully you get my drift:)

  18. OT:
    “Last season was below what we’re used to doing,” said Kompany

    Man City are so used to winning trophies now. Imagine that. Let that sink in as you think of our Dear Arsenal.

    1. How we won more than them last season??
      Or how you’re taking one statement and one win as though they’re a better team than ours?

      1. If they’re so used to winning why was there such a long patch where they were looking like a mid-table team when the title wasn’t completely won yet?

        1. You simply don’t understand me.
          Look at the results of the BPL winners below and tell me if you’re happy with Arsenal at the moment:
          2009-10- Chelsea
          2010-11- Man Utd
          2011-12 Manchester City
          2012-13 Man Utd
          2013-14 Manchester City
          2014-15 Chelsea

          All I’m saying is that Man City have just won the title 2 times in almost 50 years…and they feel they are so used to winning now.
          The irony is that if Arsenal does not start turning up, we could run into another decade without the BPL.
          If anyone told you 9 years ago that Arsenal will go a decade without winning the BPL, would you have believed them?
          We shouldn’t allow Manc, Manure, and Chelski to pull away from us in the accumulation of the BPL titles.
          That’s all I’m saying.

  19. How one of our players can spend 3 1/2 months on the sidelines and finish the season with 19 goals, but his 3 game drought constantly gets highlighted as though it sums up his season is beyond me!!
    It’s called form… Theo doesn’t score a hat-trick every game, and the West Ham side we faced were a hell of a lot more determined than West Brom at the end of season playing for nothing. Speaking in such speculative, absolutes based on the first game of season is madness!!
    Costa didn’t score for Chelsea… Should they switch to Remy??

    1. Yes DC looked pretty ineffectual and didn’t score, neither did Remy, or Falcao, or Kane, or Lukaku, or Benteke, or Rooney, or Bony, or Aguero, or Berahino – but we should make a special case for OG not scoring – simply unacceptable. 🙂

  20. Not too bad a choice if u ask me…but then u wud make this season into a mere EXPERIMENT, and I think it’ll be one too many…for me Theo needs to excel on the wings esp with his dribbling skills…then he cud be our secret weapon up front…subsequently

  21. The best attacks (with trophies to show) in the world work with pace and movement and an intelligent piece behind. Ronaldo-Tevez-rooney , suarez-messi-neymar, Eto-messi-rooney. Hazard-costa-willian, ronaldo-bale- dimaria. Its actually not Rocket science. Giroud won’t cut it fully for us.

  22. Guys, Guys – Don’t worry! According to the Metro Benzema has passed a medical and Cavani is coming too.

  23. I like Giroud, Theo & Welbs, but I doubt they will be sufficient enough for us to win the title this season, although I wish they could and I do see the potential in Theo and Welbs to become top class strikers, AFC is an injury hit team every season and I already know at some point we will be missing 1 or 2 of them, amongst others in dif positions
    positions.positions. I would like to give Sanchez a go up top aswel as I feel his skillful dribbling and work rate would create plenty of goals/assists, especially now Theo, Ozil & Santi are all fit at the same time.
    We have some dangerous combinations in the squad but how long are they all going to stay fit and in form? Regardless we are still in need of a new player or 2 just to freshen things up, upgrade positions (Flamini) and actually add some of that top top class players Let Proff keeps looking for, surely his found some by now? We know how Wenger does. COYG

  24. @Zulu-boy am starting to think you don’t want us to win the league this season.
    Believe it or not goal difference. Will tell who wins the league this year and I hope we get a world class striker that will score those needed goals

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