Theo Walcott may have to sacrifice his ambition to lead the line at Arsenal if Arsene Wenger signs Liverpool forward Luis Suarez.
But that hasn’t stopped the Gunners winger welcoming the prospect of the Uruguay star pitching up at the Emirates, even though it would severely restrict Walcott’s frontline activities.
Walcott has long fancied the central goal-getter’s role and has been disappointed not to be given too many outings in that position since he signed from Southampton in a £10million move as a 17-year-old in 2006.
But he did commit to a new long term deal in north London last season after protracted negotiations. It is thought he sought assurances that he would be given more opportunities up front – whether the Frenchman was able to give him these remains unclear.
Yet despite his hunger to become Arsenal’s lone ranger, Walcott said: “If Suarez comes, great.”
And there was a light-hearted moment when Walcott met the Press yesterday ahead of the Gunners facing Manchester City in a friendly match in Helsinki, Finland, on Saturday.
When quizzed about Suarez joining Arsenal, Walcott grinned and said: “I’ve actually just seen Luis in the dressing room.”
He was joking, of course – and when he was asked to expand on his so-called observation, he said: “We don’t really take too much interest in it – you should ask the manager about that.”
But it seems England regular Walcott, 24, says he is happy with the strength of the Arsenal squad ahead of the new campaign.
He added: “Even if we stay as we are now, we are a great team and we showed that in the last 10 games last season. We just need to do that a bit more on a consistent level at the start of this year but every player who is at Arsenal is a top-class player.
“You’re not going to get an average player come to Arsenal, I think that every player that is here is a top-class player. The boss has believed in so many players he has brought in and they have done so well.”