No nonsense Sky pundit and former Liverpool legend Graeme Souness has accused Arsenal midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain of wasting his time “laughing and giggling” too much rather than working on his form and performances, the Daily Mirror reports.
The England international bagged his first goal of the season against Bournemouth at the weekend, but has so far struggled to live up to his reputation at the Emirates.
The 22-year-old will still harbour hopes of making it into Roy Hodgson’s England squad for this summer’s European Championships, but Souness has called the player’s desire into question.
“Does he [Oxlade Chamberlain] take it seriously enough? He always seems to be a bit of a joker,” Souness said on Sky Sports. “There is a player in there. It’s stand up and be counted time.
“He’s 22, he should not be accepting, with the quality he has, sitting on the bench and being a bit-part player.
“You’ve got to be banging down the manager’s door and saying ‘I’m ready for this’. Is he prepared to do that? I see him laughing and giggling a lot [in interviews].
“I’d want him to be a bit more serious and angry and upset with me, if I was the manager leaving him out. There’s no doubt about it he has quality. When he [Arsene Wenger] doesn’t use him the other night, is it because he doesn’t trust him? At 22 it’s time to stand up and say ‘this is my moment’.’
And furthermore, the Scotsman’s sentiments were backed up by club legend Thierry Henry.
“I tried to see what was going on, the view of the manager. He must have said to himself ‘is the Ox going to win me this game’? And he must have said ‘no’! Let’s not try to lose it. It might sound crazy I know but does Oxlade-Chamberlain do enough to be a starter at Arsenal?
“How long are we going to say he’s a prospect? He’s been there for four-and-a-half-years. Enough now. You have to be a starter. The same goes with Theo Walcott.”
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