Fans never like to get on the back on players, but when you get the feeling that someone at your club is playing well within themselves and has so much more to give than they are showing, it is difficult not to feel frustrated or think that they are best off leaving for pastures new. I have previously admitted that I was amongst the many who felt that Theo Walcott should have been moved on in the summer, based on the fact that we were watching a player devoid of any confidence or ability to influence a game in Arsenal colours.
It is easy to forget that this is the same guy who fourteen Premier League goals in thirty-two appearances during the 2012/2013 season when he looked a real player, with searing pace and ability to go past players with ease being a hallmark of everything good about Walcott’s role in the team. Some could argue that he has never been the same since the serious knee injury he picked up at the start of 2014, but it is testament to his character that has proved me and many others wrong by making a real impact this season.
He has been honest enough to admit that he became comfortable at Arsenal and let his game slide away, with a drastic change in attitude in training and matches resulting in five goals in seven games in all competitions as Theo looks a completely different animal. Betway may not consider him to be amongst the leading contenders for the Premier League Golden Boot in the latest football betting odds, but we appear to have the Theo of old back and firing on all cylinders.
The manner in which he dispatched both goals in our comfortable 2-0 win against Basel in the Champions League tells me that missing out on England’s Euro 2016 squad and the threat of being moved on to West Ham has reignited the spark and fire back into his belly to be a real success at Arsenal. A change in mentality and approach has definitely improved his impact on the pitch, but Theo has always been a confidence player; becoming complacent at the Emirates never works out well, but Theo has been mature enough to put things into perspective after two disappointing seasons in which he has barely featured and make big changes that would convince Arsene Wenger that he still has something to offer.
Theo has something to offer alright. Four goals in his last three games has been the result of a player brimming with confidence and a new lease of life, and I for one hope that his excellent start to the season continues. He could more than play a role in Arsenal putting themselves amongst the contenders for the Premier League title, and with big matches to bet on after the international break against Swansea, Middlesbrough and Sunderland, it would come as no surprise to see many fans back the team to win all of them with Betway. All three are more than presentable opportunity if Arsenal are serious about chasing early pacesetters Manchester City, and although there is a long way to go in the season, it is great to see Theo bounce back from the brink and show the qualities that we all know he has