Arsene Wenger has insisted that Theo Walcott will not be sold by the club this January.
Walcott rejected a new contract at the club in August which has sparked speculation over his future ahead of the January transfer window. Liverpool were thought to be the favourites to sign the winger but Wenger has stated that the club will not sell the player meaning he may leave for free next summer.
Wenger remains confident that the club will be able to get Walcott to commit to a new deal by the end of December which is the deadline the French manager has given to the player to sort out his future. Arsenal risk alienating even more fans by allowing Walcott to let his contract wind down which means any side can come in when it has expired and sign him for nothing.
There are a number of positives for Arsenal with this news because Walcott adds a great deal of quality to the side. He is an extremely quick player who is effective in central and wider areas. It would also mean the club retaining one of their better players which is important in Arsenal’s quest to win a trophy for the first time since 2005.
Theo Walcott’s importance to the Arsenal side this season can be seen via his statistics. He has scored nine goals from 17 games this season playing primarily as a winger. The fact he’s played more centrally at times in recent games could be a big hint that Wenger may be willing to let Walcott have his way in terms of where he plays in the side for the rest of the season and beyond.
Walcott has shown in recent matches that he can be extremely effective in a striker role and he is arguably the best finisher that Arsenal have at their disposal. The recent comments from Chief Executive Ivan Gazidis also suggest that Arsenal would be ideally placed in the next two to three years to bring in similar high quality players who may ultimately help Walcott improve his own game.