Theo Walcott Could Make SURPRISE Start For Arsenal Vs. Anderlecht

According to reports, Theo Walcott could be in line for a surprise inclusion in the Arsenal squad for Wednesday’s match against Anderlecht in Belgium. The England international has been out for nine months with a cruciate ligament injury, and he only just returned to full training two weeks ago. He played his first match last Friday against Blackburn in an Under-21 game at Meadows Park. The speedster came out unscathed after playing 45 minutes.

He could be in line to make his first Champions League appearance for over a year, his last appearance in Europe came against Marseille in the same competition in a goal scoring return at the Stade Velodrome in September last year.

Arsene Wenger is thought to be taking his time to reintroduce him into the first team fold, but after his extensive rehabilitation, and his comeback, it is believed that he could be in line to play a part against the Belgian league leaders. The 2-2 draw against Hull City came too soon for him after featuring 24 hours earlier in an Under­-21 fixture.

His inclusion would come as a boost to Arsenal in many ways, because of what he brings to the teams setup. Besides being a winger with pace with a good scoring record, his movement in the final third has benefited Arsenal hugely in the past, by taking away opposition players for other teammates to exploit such spaces created by his movement.

In the absence of Mesut Ozil, and the slow tempo with which Arsenal played against Hull City, his addition to the team, would essentially open the door for Arsenal to reintroduce it high tempo game, and his ability to be a creator of goals, going by his past assist ratio would also come in handy in the German’s absence.

Whether Arsene Wenger would be favourably disposed to starting the winger is a different proposition altogether. However, using a player that suffered a similar injury at the same time as Theo Walcott in January, in the person of Radamel Falcao, who incidentally has been playing since August, but had his surgery three weeks after the Arsenal man; Theo Walcott’s return to full match competition would not come entirely as a surprise, only that Arsene Wenger and the club’s medical team seem to be holding him back before unleashing him.

Arsenal would be seeking to register it second straight win in the Champions League group stages when they play Anderlecht at the Constant Vanden Stock Stadium in Brussels.

Scroll to top