There’s a lot of talk about Theo Walcott this morning. He’s due to play for England U21s against the Republic of Ireland U21s tonight and Stuart Pearce is confident that Arsene Wenger will do what’s best for the young man. He says:
There’s one man who will know what’s best for Theo and that’s Arsene. It’s in his interest to make sure that he’s got a fantastic young player, who is extremely young at this moment in time. I know full well if you take Theo out of Arsenal and put him in a lesser side somewhere he’ll start every week. But he’s playing for one of the top sides in the world, so he’s not going to start every week.
Martin Keown echoes those thoughts, saying:
Thereâ€™s no doubt that Theo is better off at Arsenal. The best place for him is under Arsene Wengerâ€™s wing. Arsene has a great record of bringing young talent through and Iâ€™m certain that will be the case with Theo. Heâ€™s got everything you need to be a top-class player â€” speed, agility, and skill. I just think that he needs to grow up and learn the game though.
Personally I think he’s suffering from the weight of expectation, the transfer fee was a big one for such a young player and having seen Cesc and others make their mark early we’ve probably been a little disappointed that Theo hasn’t done similarly. I don’t suppose it helped when he scored a couple of goals for England U21s a year or so ago and everyone immediately began comparing him to Thierry Henry. Talk about setting him up for a fall.
There’s no question he needs to improve his game and I can understand some of the frustration about him but I think we need to be patient and give the lad a bit more time. There’s a reason why Arsene bought him, there’s a reason why he continues to play him, and that’s because he thinks he can make it at Arsenal. And that’s not the same thing as making it at Blackburn or some other mid-table club. There are standards which are higher than at most other clubs and they take some living up to. If in two years time, when he’ll be just about to turn 21, we’ve seen no real progress from him, then we should start be a bit worried, not now.
Arsene talks about two strikers. Firstly, Emmanuel Adebayor who he says is a changed man. Certainly scoring lots and lots of goals is a very good change indeed. And were he able to shapeshift and change into the form of various animals that would be even better. We could called him Manimal Adebayor. Sweet. Secondly he talks about new signing Luke Freeman who has made an impression on him apparently. The young man does a wicked Tommy Cooper but I’m told his Frank Spencer is less than convincing.
Mark Randall is having a good time up in Burnley. He’s impressed with their style of football and seems determined to make his loan spell a fruitful one.
Philippe Senderos, who will play for Switzerland against England tomorrow night, is, naturally enough, hoping for a Swiss win but knows all the players will be out to impress the new boss, Don Fabio. Personally I couldn’t care less about any of the friendlies tomorrow. Ireland are playing Brazil and the only thing we can hope for is that the Brazilians are put off by the poxy weather we’ve been having here lately.
Either that or we do what the Irish cricket team did to the West Indies many years ago. The Windies were in Ireland for a one day game and the night before were treated to an evening of food and drink and some more drink and a few pints and sure go on you might as well have another pint there and oh what’s this a little whiskey and so forth. The next day, so hungover and dying to go for Guinness poos were the West Indies that Ireland bowled them out for less than 60 runs. That’s what we need.
Right, that’s it. I have no more. Until tomorrow, Arsefans.