Arsene Wenger has reaffirmed his belief in Arsenal wingers, Theo Walcott and Andrei Arshavin, as they look to fight for a starting position in the team. Wenger has assured both players that their improved goal scoring may be rewarded with not only more playing time but also a more central role. During the game against Coventry, both players showed a renewed spirit to compete within the squad and both wingers have shown real class playing through the middle rather than their usual flanking positions.
The League Cup match against Coventry City allowed the wingers to showcase what they have to offer within the current squad and Wenger was quick to defend the duo who have come under criticism of late.
Speaking to Arsenal’s official website, Wenger said, “I am not against it [Walcott playing forward], not at all. We will try. At the moment we have a big competition up front, we have a different formula and the team is doing well.’
“His time will come for that and at the moment we have to be a bit patient. He is a great finisher now, Walcott, in front of goal he is absolutely amazing.”
When asked about Walcott’s future, Wenger said, “We all want him to stay. I always said exactly the same. I always said let’s hope that we can sign up and extend [his contract]. I speak to Theo of course. To his agents? We are always in touch with them and you have to give us some time to sort that out.’
Wenger also held praise for Arshavin and believes the Russian is making a comeback in his new found central position.
“Arshavin’s best position looks to be behind the striker now because that’s where his vision, the creative side of his game, can be very efficient. When he has to work on the flank it is sometimes working against him because he has to work too hard up and down. But when he’s central he always had an influence on the game.’