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Arsene Wenger has acknowledged to popular belief that Theo Walcott hasn’t developed as expected.
Walcott who has spent 10 years at Arsenal was signed from Southampton as a 16-year-old and was touted as one of the most promising players in his generation. 10 years later the ex-Southampton man is yet to fully fulfill his potential and has even fallen down the first team pecking order at Arsenal.
When asked if Walcott as fulfilled his potential as a striker, Wenger said, as quoted by ESPN:
“Not as well as you could have expected.”
“He had good periods in the season. I think recently he has gone through a much more difficult period.
But he will come back.”
Walcott who is in danger of missing out on the England squad traveling to France for the European championships has be warned by Roy Hodgson that he must begin to perform better for his club and Wenger has thrown his support behind Walcott, Wenger said although the forward needs to identify his best position, he is working very hard and is so determined.
“He works very hard, he puts the effort in training. At the moment, for him and Giroud it’s a bit more difficult, but that’s part of the competition,” Wenger said. “He understands that as well, and he fights very hard. But in our job things can change quickly from one week to the next.”
“The problem with Theo is he wants to play on the right and through the middle. You have to fix yourself somewhere.
When he does go through the middle he thinks maybe it’s better for me on the right,” Wenger said.
“It’s true that I fixed him more through the middle, because of the quality of his runs and the intelligence of his runs. And he has improved his finishing a lot, so he can be a player through the middle. On the flanks today, you have to work very hard defensively.”