Arsene Wenger feels it would be "difficult mentally" for Arsenal winger Theo Walcott to drop back into the England Under-21s.

The 19-year-old netted a stunning hat-trick for Fabio Capello's senior team in their World Cup qualifier in Croatia last month, but Under-21 boss Pearce has not yet given up hope of persuading the youngster to link up with his squad for the European Championship finals in Sweden next summer, should they come through a two-legged clash with Wales.

"I would not be against it, but it is very difficult mentally for a player once they have been into the top team to go back into the Under-21s again," Wenger said.

"I have seen that many times with very young players and it has never worked very well.

"I had that in France with Thierry Henry and [Nicolas] Anelka and they were already in the top team and then went below. It is never conclusive."

Wenger, though, maintains he would not stand in Walcott's way should he want to take part in the finals.

"I think he would be happy to do it, and I can understand that England wants to use him," said the Arsenal manager.

"He is 19 and if he can contribute to the Under-21 team, why not?"

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Topics:
#Arsenal
#Internationals
#Thierry Henry
#Theo Walcott
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