Henry: Walcott doesn’t know his best position

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henry walcott

Thierry Henry says that Theo Walcott’s apparent confusion over his best position is part of why he’s missed out on another international tournament.

The England man won’t be in the European Championships squad this summer, after a disappointing campaign at club level. Given a chance to claim his place up front by Arsene Wenger, he was unable to produce the necessary consistency, and as the season went on became a bit-part player.

Having played more of his career as a winger, Henry believes that the 27 year old doesn’t know what he’s supposed to be.

“By now he should know what his position is, but it is not clear,” he said.

“He has struggled. His 10 years at Arsenal have been a weird one. Apart from one season where he played more than 30 games, he wasn’t really a starter.

“I always have a mixed reaction, Theo Walcott has been in the game for 10 years, you should know about him. You always have something to prove, he should know what he can offer to a team.”

The club’s all-time leading goalscorer was slightly more upbeat about Jack Wilshere, the only Arsenal man to make Roy Hodgson’s squad.

Suggestions of favouritism which saw him selected after missing almost all of the season were brushed away.

“When a guy is special he is treated in a special way,” he said.

However, he did raise doubts about Wilshere’s ability to produce his best.

“He needs to have some match fitness,” he continued. “It is one thing to go but can you play? If you go and you can’t perform, well that is another thing.

“You can train for eight months and think you are fit but once you play that first game, you sometimes need a month to get back to that level.”

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Gunnerinho

The bench?

Bosscielny

Walcott doesn’t know his best career. He’d be much better as a PR.

Seriously speaking he should know his best position on a football pitch given that he’s almost 27 years old.

Rob67

Wherever it is, it should be with another club by August, for his sake and ours. If Wenger doesn’t move him on this will be more procrastination when we need decisive action – both in and out.

It is also clearly in Walcott’s interest to move on, if he’s interested in a football career, that is.

Harsh

Come on, Rooney has played his whole career without knowing his best position. That confusion isn’t why he wasn’t selected. Roy hodgson knows his midfield is not a collection of spanish maestros. He needs his forwards to contribute more than just erratic gaolscoring.

SB

Since he has scored 20+ goals in the one season he was fit and he is not going to the Euros, which should hurt a lot, I think we should give him one season.

He is clearly a player who needs to play regularly to find his confidence and form.

Double98

DM
Walcott’s obvious tenacity the in the tackle, his work rate and engine, positional reading of the game, passing range and quick thinking make him The ultimate successor to Manu petit.

Dave A.

Substite waterboy in the reserves

Thecrimsonlegacy

I can better that, the transfer list.

Sam

Whilst i think he’s a terrible pundit, i can agree with him on this. It’s obvious Jack is a special talent, if people can’t see that then it’s just their hatred of the player over clouding their judgement. I think Theo’s times up on the other hand, 10 years is a long time and to be kept on with as little impact as he’s had and the wage bill he’s on will be a really stupid idea.

ba dum tss

You clearly didn’t watch this masterpiece of him then
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-zcyod2pjY

Paul

Enjoyed that thanks!

Lord Bendtner

Walcott’s best position is not at Arsenal. Hate to say it, I really had hoped for more from him over the ten years. But hey, if he can go elsewhere and reignite his career, then good for him and I’m sure we will all be extremely happy. Prolly gonna need to take that salary down a few notches because honestly at the moment he hasn’t earned it, and it’s not fair for other players. Clearly he was granted that contract with the hope that by now there would be no doubt about him cementing his position in the team. But… Read more »

Lord Bendtner

Couldn’t have worded it better myself

Lord Bendtner

Sometimes I talk to myself*

Paul

Could have done less “text speak”…;-)

Third Plebeian

Forgot to sign in under the other name?

Cape Town Gooner

I also think he was granted that contract because at that stage he had the club bent over a barrel. Had we lost another high profile player it would have looked terrible for us, and with so little time left on his contract we were in danger of losing him on a free.

His agent’s milked that for all it was worth. But the wheel turns…

Sam Crow

I think you mean the tables have turned?

Anyway they haven’t because he’s absolutely raking it in and hes going nowhere unless he goes on loan with us still paying most of his wages, because no way is there another club stupid enough to match his wages and I doubt he’d take a pay cut.

Fatgooner

Doesn’t Henry talk mierde sometimes?

Walcott is not and never has been good enough for Arsenal; not as a winger or striker. That’s why his time is up.

Harold Kane, CEO of White Hart lane bottling inc.

Whenever I feel shit, Fats always has a unique way of cheering me up: making Arsenal players feel shit. Thanks Fatgooner 🙂

AKB(Not the one your thinking of)

Thierry has seen walcott from close quarters so he would know how good he could have been, which Walcott has clearly not done so

Parisian Weetabix

Fatgooner what does your picture say?

Paul

*insert jokes here…:-)

Paul

Clearly not one of my best then…:-(

Paul

and who are you on the phone to? Is it Tobin? 🙂

Fatgooner

Stan Kroenke. I was asking him to get the fuck out of my club.

Paul

What did he say? 🙂

Godfrey Twattschlock

He said 2 million in my fuck off pocket every year for nothing motherfucker!

Greg

Yo’ moma

NewSeason

His words echo that of Mr. Wenger when he said Walcott wants to play both as a right winger and as a striker.
The sad thing is he has ended up being accomplished at neither one.

emanAFC

I think th manager has to take a share of the blame too. It doesn’t look like he has decided which position Walcott fits best in the team and he’s stagnated as a result. I fear the same fate for Chambers. He needs t develop properly and learn his trade in one position rather than shuttling between midfield to central defence to full back.

Neil #2

Regarding Chambers, I’m not so sure I agree. But as far as Walcott, putting him on that high of a weekly wage when he is clearly injury prone and hasn’t yet produced a consistency that merits a six-figure salary was a bit odd.

Stillmatic

There is element of truth in this. We’re seeing the same with Oxlaide too.

It’s good to be versatile, but it can also leave one as a jack of all and master of none.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Great comment! Wenger once saw Walcott as a CF but uses him on the wing, saw the Ox in center midfield but uses him on the wing, Chambers as described above, Ramsey, nobody knows anymore. All these four players stagnating.

Holyviper

Walcott really feels like the second guy in a 2-upfront team, something we might NEVER play for a long while now. He’d do such a good job like Vardy/Torres/Aubameyang kinda ‘Dispatcher’ role: put him the ball, let him sprint into oblivion and do his thing, and pray.

damo

he doesn’t really have that final finish though at least not consistently

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

His statistics indicate otherwise.

Stillmatic

I think this is a hugely important point that people don’t seem to realise. Theo, as is his case of his career with injuries, is also a product of bad timing. Theo was bought just before the style of football changed to either a 1-man CF or later a false-9 CF. He was bought right at the tale end of just before Wenger transitioned away from his 4-4-2. Theo is a remnant of that bi-gone era. No doubt he was meant to play as that little man in a 2-man forward role that doesn’t exist much anymore (but is making… Read more »

loose_cannon

It’s funny you say he can’t fit into iur style of of play when Ramsey, Ox etc also don’t fit. Maybe it’s not the players, maybe it’s our style of play! When we had Hleb, Cesc, a fit Rosicky etc, we still didn’t win anything. Most of the top teams are more direct than us, even Real Madrid who just won the CL. We need to forget about our mythical Barca-lite style of play (that doesn’t work!!!) and go back to the Invincible style. A style that Walcott and the like could actually work in funnily enough

el-bahja

I just believe Thoe time is up may be smaller teams can offer him that striker position he struggle for

walenaija

Are you an accountant? He is an English man for goodness sake and showed he was very good at scoring when he was offered the pay-rise in contract. That period he was benching Giroud in top nine role. I hope you have not forgotten. Theo’s 10 years at arsenal of 85 goals and about 30 assist to me is better than Welbec years (9) as a professional footballer. We all seem to go overboard with Walcott. As for henry, FORGET HIM. He is still terrible at his present work and will be worse as a coach.

Gunman

Perhaps you’re right, what does Henry know about football? Maybe we should forget him and listen to your expert opinion instead.

MannyG

That’s a bit of a concern lol

someone's something

Walcott has always know what position he wants to play in. As a matter of fact he been telling everyone what position would suit him best every since he put that Arsenal-jersey on. Problem is he lacks the quality to play there in our current formation and tactical system. Just like Vardy this season, I think Walcott would flourish playing as one of two strikers in a 4-4-2 formation with a direct play. But now he’s trying to force himself into a possession-based tactical system that plays with a lone striker. And given is overall lack in ball control and… Read more »

Wenger in or out?

Theo has no one to blame but himself for his Arsenal career. He insisted on playing through the middle and never truly applied himself to being a good winger. He’s failed playing through the middle, now there is nothing to fall back on

goonero

His best position is on the wing. He’s not nor has he ever been a striker. That joke needs to die. His best position for Arsenal is as the man who puts the cherry on the cake. The guy you bring in when you’re 3-0 up with 20 mins to go and the opposition have already thrown in the towel. That is when Theo thrives, when no one can be arsed to stop him running. And I say running not dribbling, because we know he can’t do that either, it’s more of a stumbling bumbling baby cheetah who’s feet move… Read more »

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

To be fair, Walcott scored an unbelievable number of goals at youth level elsewhere. It is normal that he sees himself as a striker. He was brought to replace Henry and Henry wasn’t a winger at Arsenal. We all were happy that Wenger managed to get him ahead of Man U and all other big clubs. Just to tell the truth even though I think his future is now elsewhere.

BMgooner

Walcott’s best position is without the ball at his feet… On an athletics track

Paul

I think the problem with Theo is that he can’t dribble, pass or shoot very well! Sadly.

Gunman

I wouldn’t mind Theo as a squad player but whilst he’s on £140k a week I’m afraid that’s not a practical option, so if he’s not good enough for the first team which he clearly isn’t I think he needs to be moved on this summer.

DAMOBOT

Walcott is a world class talent, if you doubt that just go and watch what he was doing a 17, 18 and 19. His problem is not positioning but that of desire and hunger. He has his hot and cold phases. Also the injuries he has had especially when he was on a run can do something to you mentally. Every time he was close to his best, he got injured. There is a huge mental aspect to his problems. I think the summer off would be a good thing for him to see if he can re establish his… Read more »

Paul

So you would have kept TGSTEL then?? 🙂

DAMOBOT

My comment wasn’t about keeping or getting rid of him. My point was about his ability as a football player. There is a ceiling to a players footballing ability. Some players reach it some don’t. Some players touch on it earlier on in their Career and some later on. The name of the game is being able to stay close to your potential for as long as possible. Very few players are able to do that. I remember when Wayne Rooney was the best thing that ever happened since sliced bread. Now look how he is being treated, like a… Read more »

Paul

I wouldn’t call waiting for ten years the sign of someone wanting “instant gratification”.

Pius Ogar

The 442bformation will suit him

Paul

“442b” – is that a 442 with him on the bench??

Jamie Vardinho

hahahaha

Goon

I think wilshere doesn’t know his best position. He thinks he is a Porno type player. I think he’s best on the wing or number 10 position.

Anup

What does that even mean?! Porno type player?!

Paul

Good engine with an explosive finish maybe? 😉

Jamie Vardinho

lol jaysus

GoonerOfPuppets

Please don’t tell me that you wanted to type Pirlo but it was auto-corrected to porno instead.

Cracked

Walcott doesn’t have a best position after ten years.

Says it all really.

Fletcher

One thing for sure is he knows how to count money.

Anup

I think some of the criticism of Walcott on here is a bit overboard. As he demonstrated in games against Manchester United and a couple of others (I can’t remember exactly which ones), he does have the ability to play up front. However, it seems that he isn’t ‘up’ for every game. He doesn’t have the burning desire in every game to go out and figuratively rape the opposition defence. Thierry Henry’s point, I think, is that when he doesn’t have this desire to really go at it and be aggressive in every game, and he subsequently gets dropped from… Read more »

DAMOBOT

My point exactly. While I never played professionally, I remember always when i got on the pitch I was like a possessed man. I could carry on for four hours even with a busted knee. Desire and hunger is what drives us to push ourselves to the limit.

Paul

Anup. “fans are quick to forget the one season he had for us when he was playing upfront and banging them in”
That’s one in ten seasons, you do the maths!
Also I don’t see many insults, just opinions which is good.
I feel bad for Theo but he needs to go elsewhere in a more counter attacking team imo.

TeeCee

Well as stated he is 27, so he really needs to maximise his earnings over the next few years to prepare for the day when he’s forced to hang his boots up.

Thus his best position is obvious. On the bench at Citeh…..

Sam Crow

Why would City buy him? They have pep who like players to pass the ball backwards and sideways until the opposition falls asleep. Not players who make 1/15 passes and 1/187 gazillion dribbles and then fall over.

Die Hard Gooner

his problem is he isnt robust and strong enough to be a striker and he doesnt see much of the ball to play as a winger. He has improved his movement but has regressed his dribbling skills. he used to like recievieng more of the ball but now he is invisible most games. his finishing can range between classy and mediocre. I think he would be great at a counter attacking team as a striker, not at a possesion based system. He should move for his own sake.

santori

It is difficult for Walcott. He has pace and his touch has improved plus decision making. But he is not a hold up CF which we tend to need. Perhaps his best position is floating as a second striker given freedom to roam in a 4-4-2 but we rarely ever play this anymore. Maybe with Granit, Wenger will have sufficient Steel in midfield (or with Coqzorla combination). Granit and Santi can both release the ball quickly from deep taking better advantage of an asset like Theo. But where would you have to play Ozil for that? In which case Theo… Read more »

santori

Those who continuously criticise Giroud (The media) should also bear in mind that OG has weighed in with 20+ goals for last 3 seasons. We cannot say the same for Welbeck or Walcott even with injuries. Welbeck shows potential and graft but you can hardly say he is a goal threat at the moment. Still he has potential ahead of him. Walcott at 27yrs has failed to hit the heights he promised several seasons past. I think its more a question of Olivier and someone-else that we need rather than someone-else for Olivier. That just doesn’t seem to hold any… Read more »

santori

I think the critical area we are missing up top is creativity. Giroud is a very good player who holds the ball superbly and contributes as a node for the team when not scoring. Some of his touches are simply sublime. He also weighs in with goals each season not to mention gives us a physical side and is the top predator in the air in the league. Welbeck if he can recover from injury can develop into a hybrid of sorts between the pace of Walcott and the physical element of Giroud. Walcott for me is mainly pace but… Read more »

Ash

I can tolerant technically limited player some time as long he’s working hard enough
but, sadly
lack of effort from theo seriously beyond the pale

Jack Wheelchair

Sell,Sell…Sell!!!

richardanus

Give up on Walcott.

Most of the World hsd.