All signs have pointed towards a move away from Arsenal for Theo Walcott in recent weeks.
Five goals and two assists in the Premier League last term is a poor return for a player who yearns to be the Gunners’ number one striker.
Despite a promising start to the 2015/16 season, Walcott’s form soon tailed off and saw him fall below Olivier Giroud, Danny Welbeck and Joel Campbell in the pecking order at the turn of the new year.
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The vast majority of fans are now calling for the 27-year-old’s sale, with West Ham reportedly interested in signing him for £25 million.
Such a fee would go a long way towards Arsenal signing a new-and-improved right winger - but that might not be the case.
According to the Telegraph, Walcott has been assured by Arsene Wenger that his future lies at the Emirates Stadium, and that he will compete for a starting berth on the right flank next season.
Walcott potentially faces even greater competition for places amidst rumours that Jamie Vardy and Henrikh Mkhitaryan could arrive in north London, but regardless, Wenger believes the much-maligned winger still has a role to play.
Cue growns from the Arsenal faithful.
Upon signing as a promising 16-year-old from Southampton in 2006, it seemed the Gunners had secured the signing of a future star.
However, some ten years on and Walcott has barely progressed and done little to justify the hype that surrounded his transfer.
Wenger still values him as a key asset, though. Reports suggest that the Frenchman held talks with his English wide man at the end of last season and agreed that he would fight for a place on the right, rather than upfront.
This is despite the fact Manchester City, Liverpool and West Ham are all willing to spend big on him.
But rest assured, Arsenal fans, Wenger doesn’t plan to simply stick with Walcott on the right.
According to the Mirror, Borussia Dortmund are ready to sell top target Mkhitaryan, who favours a move to the Emirates over Chelsea and Tottenham.
Riyad Mahrez is also a £40 million target, with Arsenal reportedly interested in luring both the Algerian and Vardy this summer.
Arsenal fans: is Wenger making the right decision by keeping Walcott? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.
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