English Premiership

Versatile Walcott up for the challenge

2015-07-21 08:40
Theo Walcott (AP)

Cape Town - Theo Walcott says Arsenal's front men trust each other to switch positions effectively during a game.

The England international scored four times in the final two games of last season as a centre forward, and on Saturday he struck in the Barclays Asia Trophy final from a starting position on the left.

Walcott prefers a central role but his off-the-ball runs are effective from wide positions too and he says that fluid front lines are now a feature of the game.

"In modern-day football the three up front tend to change around a lot," Walcott told the club's website.

"You see it with England and with Barcelona, so we have that sort of trust in each other knowing that everyone can do that sort of role. It’s not a problem at all.

"I like it anywhere. I enjoy playing for this club. It’s well-documented where I want to play but there’s a lot of competition in that front line. If I’m in a role then I have to do my best there, but it’s another option for the manager. It’s not a bad thought."

Walcott is getting back to his best after a long injury lay-off and his finishing ability is highly regarded by Arsène Wenger.

"I’m always going to be judged on goals and I’ve been very happy with my goal record when I’ve been given the opportunity, and that’s all I can do," said Walcott.

"I enjoy scoring, I want to score for this club and you get a nice feeling of confidence from it as well. The belief that players show in you when you score goals, you’re going to get more and more opportunities.

"I’ll be judged on goals - that’s what strikers want to do, to score goals. I haven’t set a target as yet but when you’re a striker you need to be aiming for 15 or in the 20s. That’s a good start.

"I wouldn’t say I’m flying yet," added Walcott. "It's only one game and we can’t get too excited. In these games you want to get the match sharpness and training as well. We’ve only been training for just over a week, so not long at all.

"I am fairly confident. It’s my first pre-season for two years and I want to work really hard to make sure I’m in the starting line-up for the first game of the season."


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