Football

Theo Walcott demands striker role in Arsenal contract talks

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Theo Walcott is ready to demand assurances over his role in the Arsenal team before agreeing a new contract, reports The Mirror.

The 26-year-old has just 12 months remaining on his current £90,000-a-week deal but seems keen to extend his stay in north London.

However, before doing so Walcott would like his role within Arsene Wenger's squad clearly defined and wants promises that he will be given the chance to play up front from time to time.

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Strangely, Walcott accepts that his best position is on the wing, but is of the opinion that he is Arsenal's best attacking option against certain opposition.

There was strong evidence for that case in the FA Cup final against Aston Villa where Walcott's pace disrupted their usually high defensive line.

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Fine form

Walcott was also impressive in Arsenal's final Premier League game against West Brom. He scored a hat-trick in that match and won a starting berth at Wembley where, again, he scored.

He will now use that fine form as leverage in negotiations with the club and wants to know that he will be given the chance again against lesser opponents.

Competition in the squad

That would come at the expense of Olivier Giroud, who himself has been in fine form this season.

The Frenchman scored 19 goals in all competitions despite spending most of the first half out with a broken leg.

But while Walcott can play in a variety of roles, Giroud is an out-and-out striker, meaning he is likely to get the nod in the majority of next season's games.

Is he worth the trouble?

Walcott's four goals in Arsenal's final two games served as a timely reminder of just how good the former Southampton starlet could still be.

The England international has always threatened to break into the realms of world-class goal scorers, but injury has always held him back.

A full season under his belt next term will surely reap a healthy return of goals and help Arsenal in their title challenge.

He could be a key player and getting him tied down to a new contract will be crucial.

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Topics:
Football
Premier League
Arsenal
Theo Walcott
Transfer News

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