If there is something I have come to learn about Arsenal's Theo Walcott over the years, it is that the English international isn't afraid to make his opinion heard. Also, the 23-year-old is also a firm believer that he is best suited as a striker on the pitch...and he is making that opinion heard again.
In an interview with talkSPORT (via Goal.com) Walcott revealed that it would be his "dream" to lead Roy Hodgson's forward line, saying:
It would be a dream to play up front for England, but, obviously, the manager makes the decisions.
It's an option for the manager, who has probably seen me play a few times for Arsenal up front now. It's something different that we might not have had before, making runs in behind.
I just love playing up front, you can wander around anywhere.
A few years ago I would've doubted Walcott's comments, but by all accurate measures—well, the only accurate measure (goals)—the Arsenal man has been emphatic upfront. This season he has already netted 18 times in 29 appearances for the Gunners.
With a fair way still to go in all competitions, I wouldn't put it past Walcott to get his tally past 25 come the end of the season. And if you think that Walcott's improved scoring upfront has diminished his ability to turn provider, you would be very wrong. With 10 assists this season, the pacy forward has proved to be one of the best performers in the English Premier League this year.
If I could add my two cents' worth, I believe Walcott is best served as a centre forward. Sure he can get the goals, but it is his physique which will prevent him from ever becoming an all-out striker. Even Walcott himself admitted that he needs to improve holding up the ball, telling reporters:
Now, I've just got to learn the other side of it as well, when it is not going too well.
I am not going to be the best guy to hold it up at times, but that is something I am practising in training. I always practice scoring goals and the next thing is to practice holding the ball up.
Only time will tell whether we will see Walcott partner Wayne Rooney sometime in the future? One thing is for certain though: He certainly makes a strong case as a goal-getter.
Where is Walcott most effective on the pitch?