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Arsenal winger Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has revealed he struggled to handle the pressure of playing for Arsenal in the past, via the Metro.
The winger who joined Arsenal from Southampton in 2011 as an 18-year-old has struggled to fulfil his potential. While at Southampton, Chamberlain was tipped to develop into one of the best players in his generation but that has not happened and he has failed to make an impact at Arsenal.
The winger has now revealed he only recently learned how to handle the pressure of playing for the club.
‘As I’ve got older, the pressure on myself and the expectations go up,’ he told the club’s official website.
‘You need to find a way to manage that the best for yourself and I’ll be honest, it’s not until recently, the last six months to a year or so, that I’ve fully got my head around how to go about that with dealing with people’s expectations on me and my own expectations.
‘It can be hard and I still think I’m quite young, I’ve just turned 23 and now it’s focusing on how to push myself further and better myself as a player.’
It is now understandable why the winger has failed to impress at Arsenal all these years. However, it is now or never for the winger, he is currently into the penultimate year of his contract and reports claim he will not be offered a new contract unless he impresses Wenger this season.
Wenger wanted to sell the midfielder in the summer but he opted to stay and fight for his future at the club and he has the next few months to do so.
The 23-year-old will have to battle Alex Iwobi and Theo Walcott for a place in the starting xi, in order to show Wenger that he has come off age.