Theo Walcott has played 313 games for Arsenal since joining in January 2006…that’s quite a few. In that time he’s scored hat-tricks, notched vital assists and won games for us, but according to Arsene Wenger his performance against Manchester United in today’s 3-0 victory ranks up there with his best ever.
The England international may not have registered a goal but his movement in the first half was a constant menace as the Gunners killed the game inside 20 minutes.
Speaking after the match, the boss couldn’t hide his pride at the manner in which the 26-year-old bullied his opponents.
“I must say Walcott had a hugely committed performance today in a hugely convincing way. He didn’t score but I like to praise the strikers when they don’t score and contribute and give assists.
“He was involved in two goals – Ozil’s and Alexis’ [second] one. He did really fight today and showed he can fight, commit and protect the ball as well. He is gaining some aspects of his game as a centre-forward and they are improving.
“In this position [as a striker], [it was] certainly [his best game]. The day he was injured here he had a great game against Tottenham and I would put that up there.”
Arsenal’s win takes them up to second in the table just two points behind Manchester City as the players disperse for the international break. On a memorable day at the Emirates the only concern is that Alexis Sanchez has picked up a knock.
Giving an update on the Chilean, whose brace took him to six goals in eight days, the boss noted: “He has a little groin problem. Unfortunately, he goes to Chile. You cannot stop him from going to Chile and he loves so much to play for his country and he will play against Brazil [on Friday] and Peru [next] Tuesday so the game at home against Brazil he will not want to miss. Hopefully he will come back in good shape.
“My plan is to pray now that everyone comes back from international games without any injury because we have a small group. We play at Watford straight away and on Tuesday night here against Bayern Munich. We will need the same kind of performance.”