The date is the 10th of September 2008 and Theo Walcott has just announced himself to the nation with a hat-trick against Croatia. Each goal showcased his extreme pace and acceleration along with finishing equal to that of any top class centre forward in the Premier League.
Not many people thought that it would take nearly four years till Theo scored again for his country but when he did it was well worth the wait.
Theo Walcott helped to save England against Sweden on Friday night and I’m not afraid to say I was one of a possible large number shouting Theo’s name at the top of my lungs in a beer induced stupor. According to The Sun it seems that Arsenal have overlooked the England mans talents by focusing on RVP’s contract negotiations and now that the winger’s stock has shot up many big names are taking note that he will be out of contract next summer.
So if Walcott decided to stay in the Premiership but not at the Emirates, as The Sun seems to think is a possibility, then where should he go? Here are three choices I would strongly consider if I was able to have a word with the footballer/children’s book writer:
Although it may be seen as a step down, Alan Pardew’s Newcastle are a team on the up. If they can keep a hold of at least one of Demba Ba or Papiss Cisse then they will have a goal threat and with Ben Arfa, Cabaye, Tiote and Gutierrez there midfield is one of the best in the League, not to mention the foundation of their successful spine with Taylor, Colocinni and Krul in goal.
The only outlet of pace in the team is Ben Arfa but due to his role as creative maestro in the team they need someone with the pace and acceleration of Walcott to burn up the turf on the wings to give Newcastle another dimension to their attack. Not only that but he has shown this tournament that his delivery has improved and could help feed Ba and Cisse, as well as chip in with a goal or two himself.
As long as Newcastle continue to threaten that Champions League clique at the top of the league then Walcott should consider them a possible destination.
Now I know a lot of you will be thinking that Walcott would never do that to the Arsenal fans but after Sol Campbell, David Bently and William Gallas have made the transition from the Gunners to the Spurs the prospect will seem less daunting.
Besides, if the rumours are true and Barcelona are snooping around Gareth Bale then he could prove to be a wonderful replacement. Lennon and Bale showed last season that with Adebayor up front the pace on the wings is a threat to challenge even the top sides in the Premiership and will be something the future manager of White Hart Lane would love to have in his ammo.
It would be controversial and Theo is a boyhood Arsenal fan but it wouldn’t be the first time a footballer has surprised us.
Another team that are in the market for a winger, with Milos Krasic a name that is flying around, Walcott would slot in nicely at Anfield. With a natural left footed winger on the left and a naturally right footed winger on the right there would be no need for Downing to cut in from the right onto his favoured left only to repeat this untill eventually giving the ball away.
Not only that but with Luis Suarez on Paris St Germain and Juventus’ radar respectively then Walcott might get the chance to finally play in his favoured role through the middle.
The thought of an all English front line with Theo playing off the imperious Andy Carroll could bring some success back to Liverpool domestically and also enhance each other’s international chances, as Roy Hodgson has shown he trusts playing partnerships at clubs to work on the international stage.
Walcott’s pace has always been his strength and thanks to Euro 2012 he has politely reminded the footballing world what he can do, Arsenal must focus on making sure he doesn’t potentially follow RVP out of the exit.
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