Thursday, 1 November 2012

Theo-Ry of Evolution

I wrote this for "Pick Our Team" at the start of October, still prevalent now.

The Original link can be found here:

Theo Walcott is one of the most divisive Arsenal players I've known since I started supporting the club. You either love him or hate him, it seems.
I can understand the people who love him because he comes across as a well-rounded, well-mannered young lad who only wants to play football and not get involved in shenanigans and brands like some of his team-mates (looking at you Frimpong, although I've just remembered Theo's children's books).
On the pitch, Theo's searing speed is an attribute few have and watching him over the last 18 months I have noticed his attempts to be more savvy in attacking positions, the link-up play he had with Robin Van Persie last season was sensational.
There is always a flipside though and Theo's lack of a killer finish means he's always going to be looked on as a wide player or impact substitute. His negative attributes include being very profligate and a touch that lets him down at key moments, so I can see both sides of the coin. As Theo trundles into the final year of his contract, even I have swung back and forth on whether he should be kept or sold.
I'm actually surprised it's got this far with Arsenal's penchant for flogging players who make it to the final 12 months of a deal (unless you're a golden oldie like Pires or Bergkamp) and talk of Theo wanting 100k a week hasn't gone down well. Is he worth it?
On first look, the answer would be no, but I think he'll click. I can see the player developing both mentally and physically over the last 18 months and think it would be a stupid mistake if he were to be let go and doubly stupid if it was to a Premier League rival. You just know he would come back to haunt us if he was sold to a Chelsea or Liverpool.
Gervinho's "success" in the false nine position should give Theo hope; they both show the same kind of willingness and attitude, he just needs a go. Whether I think he'll get a go is another story. Gnabry has been involved in match days and Oxlade-Chamberlain's starts, added to the contract stand-off, means we might never find out.

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