Arsenal

Arsenal Transfer News: Club Has Created Tough Situation with Theo Walcott

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 28:  Tony Hibbert of Everton competes with Theo Walcott of Arsenal during the Barclays Premier League match between Everton and  Arsenal at Goodison Park on November 28, 2012 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images
Ian HanfordFeatured ColumnistDecember 8, 2012

Arsenal is at a standstill with talented winger Theo Walcott and negotiations don't appear to be going anywhere anytime soon.

According to BBC Sport, Arsene Wenger is losing patience with Walcott:

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger on Theo Walcott’s contract talks: “I am frustrated. He knows what I want and he has to make up his mind.”

— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) December 7, 2012

Yes, Walcott does know what Arsenal wants, but he's not happy with it, and who could blame him?

According to The Mirror reporter John Cross, "Walcott has made it clear that he wants to stay and sign a new deal, but it is Arsenal who appear to be unwilling to budge on their £75,000-a-week contract offer."

And it's not like Walcott doesn't have some leverage. Cross mentions in a different report that "Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City are all circling."

Liverpool would arguably be a step down, although not by much at this point, but Chelsea and Manchester City's current prestige speaks for itself. If Walcott wants to chase English Premier League or Champions league glory, either one of those clubs would fit his needs.

It's obvious that Wenger is interested in keeping Walcott on board, but Walcott isn't going to be insulted with a lower offer than he's worth.

Part of Walcott's expectations may be unreasonable, even if his desire for higher wages isn't. He has the ability to play striker, and probably would play there if he joined Liverpool, but he's much more dangerous on the wing.

He may want to play there, but it doesn't suit his talents.

His speed and long strides allow him to attack the flank and give the attack some width. He's scored four goals so far this season with the Gunners, using his expert ball-handling and movement without the ball to create space for himself.

Moving to striker wouldn't give him that space and it wouldn't take advantage of his ability to cross the ball in. He may feel like he's ready to play at the top of the attack, but it just doesn't make sense right now.

This situation doesn't look like it's going anywhere anytime soon.

Walcott feels slighted and Wenger has too much pride to just give in. This looks like a stalemate that will ride itself until Walcott hits free agency.

Both sides are at fault to a point, but it's about money in the end.  As long as he's producing, Walcott would be happy enough on the wing, but he's never going to be happy as an underpaid and under-appreciated player.

That's where the club has gone wrong.

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