Theo Walcott says a fearless streak has helped him get over his injury problems this season and rediscover his best form.
The Arsenal winger has received plaudits for his recent performances and earned praise from manager Arsene Wenger following Wednesday’s 3-0 win against Wolves .
Walcott scored his 11th goal of the season at Molineux and also won the penalty that saw Sebastien Bassong sent off and Robin van Persie give the Gunners an early lead from the spot.
After being critisised by some sections of Emirates Stadium earlier this season, the 23-year-old has responded by playing a key role in Arsenal’s upturn in form.
And Walcott has revealed that some wise words from Wenger have helped him regain his confidence.
“I'm 23 now and I am still growing. I am not afraid of getting hurt," he told Arsenal Player.
"A few years ago I had shoulder injuries, ankle problems and back problems and that was just me learning the other side of the game.
"Now I am just going into games and enjoying myself, not being scared of anything. The manager always tells me not to be afraid going into tackles. I am a totally different Theo Walcott now.
"We are playing great football and it’s nice to be part of that and not on the treatment table."
Arsenal are now five points ahead of fourth-placed Tottenham in the race for Champions League qualification.
They host Wigan on Monday night knowing victory would move them one step closer to securing third place in the Premier League.