Walcott eyes striking chance

Theo Walcott is ready to answer England's striking call if he starts alongside Wayne Rooney against Brazil.

Last Updated: 05/02/13 at 07:30 Post Comment

Theo Walcott: Enjoys striking role

Theo Walcott: Enjoys striking role

Theo Walcott is ready to answer Roy Hodgson's striking call should the England manager decide to pair the Arsenal man with Wayne Rooney at Wembley on Wednesday night.

With Jermain Defoe and Daniel Sturridge both ruled out by injury, Hodgson has been left with only two forwards from his original squad, Rooney and Manchester United team-mate Danny Welbeck.

And in training at St George's Park on Monday, Walcott was the player pushed up to support Rooney, occupying the role where he has enjoyed so much success with Arsenal this season.

It was a job he pleaded with Arsene Wenger for. And he would be delighted to carry it out for his country as well.

"I didn't expect it to go as well as it has," said Walcott. "I thought it would take a few games to get used to it because I hadn't played there for seven years.

"I have done it in training but matches are totally different.

"Of course there were nerves and a lot of pressure but when you are demanding to play in a certain role you need to perform.

"If the manager decides to pick me with Wayne it could work. I am probably slightly quicker than him off the mark. I am a runner, whilst Wayne likes to drop and can see any ball.

"He is something special and definitely in top form."

Walcott's move inside is a replica of the one Thierry Henry made with such stunning results following his move from Juventus.

And on his recent training stint with the Gunners, Henry took time out to discuss the situation with Walcott in a private chat the England man rates as one of the most important 90 minutes of his entire career.

"It's probably the best hour-and-a-half I've ever had," said Walcott.

"I just went up to him. I didn't expect it to be that long but I am glad it was.

"You learn a lot when you talk to someone with that much experience. It was about all sorts of stuff and maybe one day I'll come out with it.

"But it meant a lot."

The conversation was another significant event during a season in which Walcott has made the transition from youth to mature individual, worthy of the 30 caps he has now amassed.

Even Walcott's features have changed, the scar running right across his eye was as a result of a weekend confrontation with Stoke.

"I think it was (Andy) Wilkinson - it must have been an accident, might been hand and nails," he said.

"He stopped me - quite a lot. But there were loads of things happening off the ball which the linesmen and referees didn't see.

"A few people have said it makes me look a little bit harder.

"But I honestly don't believe that because I am the biggest softy of them all."


Click here for completely free £10 bet with Sky Bet & £5 free every week


Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

S

hould have stayed because we carried him for 6.5 years. And then he has a breakthrough season, and was gone soon after. MU fans, you would be as disgusted had C Ronaldo left in 2007 and not 2009.

godof86
Is Van Persie Slipping Sadly Into The Night?

G

ood grief. Someone guessed that the form English player at the moment might be in his national side with some other players? And that's espionage? Now if they discovered that Emile Heskey was going to be in the starting line up.... at right back.... THAT would be espionage. Give it a rest Roy.

RogerRedHat
Hodgson hits out at Kane leak

H

e may get away with if Liverpool can swap the video with one of Skrtel dancing or something, but if they review the one shown on TV he's screwed.

hump3.
Skrtel denies violent conduct

Footer 365

Israel 0-3 Wales: Gareth Bale's double sends Wales top of Group B

Gareth Bale scored two and set up another as Wales moved to the top of Group B with a 3-0 win over 10-man Israel in Haifa.

Raheem Sterling expects to be fit for Liverpool trip to Arsenal

Raheem Sterling expects to be fit for Liverpool's trip to Arsenal, despite pulling out of England's Turin date.

Danny Welbeck out of England game v Italy, Ryan Bertrand called up

Roy Hodgson has confirmed Danny Welbeck will miss England's friendly in Italy, while Ryan Bertrand has been called up.

Mail Box

Where's The Love For Walcott?

Theo Walcott is wanted by neither Arsenal or Liverpool fans in the afternoon Mailbox. Also, some good points on the FA skewed priorities, and glorious geekery...

Ripe Robin Still Has A Role To Play...

There is some support for the aging Robin van Perise in a frankly threadbare Mailbox. Also, more debate over homegrown players, with a suggestion of an import tax...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company