Is Arsenal Starlet Theo Walcott England’s Next Hero In Waiting?

Is the Emirates youngster ready to take his place on the international stage?

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“I’m always the country’s biggest hope or biggest disappointment.” said Walcott.

After missing most of the season with injury Walcott appears to be coming back to his best just when his country needs him most with Aaron Lennon out injured. At the Emirates the by-law is “In Arsene We Trust” so perhaps England fans (including ex-professional who should know better) should take heed of Wenger’s prediction that Walcott would be getting back to his best in 6 weeks after his return from injury. His growing maturity and mental strength were evident for all at the Emirates on Saturday where, despite a disappointing week of a very disappointing season which has seen him injured for its majority, Walcott put in a top class display creating chance after chance for his team mates and capping his performance with a fine left footed goal.

Following a poor game for England Walcott had to endure the criticism of many ex-professionals. In response to Chris Waddle’s comments that he does not have a football brain he said, “I heard what he said, but I don’t listen to people on the outside of football. I listen to those around me – the boss, Mr Capello and my family.”

Waddle who writes for the Daily Mail, has reiterated his criticisms in the paper today. Waddle spoke of the need for Walcott to develop his left foot perhaps me missed Walcott’s goal on Saturday vs. Burnley and forgets the third goal of the great hatrick Walcott scored against Croatia back in 2008.

Would Waddle take Walcott to the world cup? Apparently not, rather than wait to see if Theo’s form continues to improve as the Arsenal starlet has his first run of games this season, he has already decided he is not good enough. Does he opt to take David Beckham proven season in and season out for England? No. Waddle has decided that if Aaron Lennon regains his fitness that he should get on the plane. Whilst we all expect some partisanship whilst commenting on club football one would hope that disappears where the England team is concerned. Lennon has had some fine displays this season but it is only this season. Should England really gamble on a player who has deceived to impress for so long and who is currently out injured? If he returns to play in April will he really be back to his best by the world cup? Injured players need match practice as well as fitness.

We can only hope that Wayne Rooney’s knee injury is a temporary setback for the England centre forward. A club vs. country row is in the making with Ferguson upset that Rooney played a full game on Wednesday night and England fans starting to worry that Rooney will be burnt out by the time the world cup arrives. Ferguson should be given praised for resting Rooney on Saturday having criticised the England camp and Rooney for his long spell on the pitch on Wednesday.

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