Arsene Wenger: Walcott still a striker
Posted by Aaron C-Reid | Published on August 7, 2016
After Theo Walcott told Arsene Wenger he wants to be considered a winger for the upcoming season, the Arsenal boss insists he sees Walcott’s future up front. Walcott continuously asked to be played through the middle since Robin van Persie’s departure in 2012 and his wishes were granted last season. However, after having a somewhat underwhelming season the English international recently asked to be utilised primarily on the right.
Walcott has started at number 9 in all of Arsenal’s 4 pre-season games thus far and after failing to impress most Arsenal fans are demanding a striker be bought before the transfer window slams shut. Arsene Wenger has continuously claimed Arsenal are in the market for a forward, although he thinks Walcott can be the answer to Arsenal’s striker woes.
After Walcott bagged a goal in Arsenal’s convincing 8-0 win over Viking on Friday, Wenger suggested Walcott’s days on the wing could be over.
“I believe [Walcott] has all the ingredients to be a great striker,” he told the media after being asked about the Englishman’s future.
“He has the quality of his runs, he’s a very intelligent player, he’s a good finisher. He’s not a great defender so to use his runs in the final third for us could be very efficient.
“On the flank, today so much defensive work is asked of the players. You lose a lot of his qualities when you put him there.
“I don’t really doubt that for me, in my head I will use him more up front.”
Even though he only managed 5 goals in Arsenal’s inconsistent Premier League campaign Wenger sees him as an out-and-out striker. As Olivier Giroud will miss the Gunner’s Premier League opener next Sunday, Walcott will most likely start up top in his absence.
With the North London side lacking options in the striking department will we see another player come to rival Walcott and Giroud?