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October 10, 2011 / benwolfson08

OX vs. Theo

The 18-year old joined Arsenal this summer from Southampton Academy

The 22-year old Walcott has 19 caps for England

Two players remarkably similar, but also quite different are Arsenal’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Theo Walcott. Walcott, often compared to LeBron James was seen as England’s golden boy when he signed with the Gunners as a teenager. He also was famously part of the 2006 England World Cup team when he was just 16 years old. Walcott, is one of the faster players in the Premier League and had a breakout season last year when he scored 13 goals and added 10 assists.

Oxlade-Chamberlain or better known as Ox to the Arsenal faithful signed this summer. Having just turned 18 years old the winger has been starring for the England U-21’s team. In his last game against Iceland, Ox scored all three of the team’s goals in a victory. These weren’t gimme’s either, all three were beautiful scores.

This year Walcott has three goals and two assists for Arsenal and has been inconsistent with his performances. However, he has played well for Fabio Capello’s England squad during international competition.

Walcott also came under fire this summer when he told the media he would like to be used up front as a striker instead of on the wing. With his blistering pace I believe Theo would excel at the striker role. Arsenal already have one of the Premier League’s best, Robin Van Persie, at that position so unless boss Arsene Wenger wants to play Theo up front like Manchester United does with Chicharito and Wayne Rooney this might not happen.

Oxlade-Chamberlain was given the start in the Champions League match and showed why he was so touted this summer, scoring his first goal in an Arsenal kit.

This gives Ox three goals and five assists in only three games for the U-21 squad, while scoring two goals against Shrewsbury and Olympiacos for Arsenal.

The difference between Theo and Ox is simple. Theo is bit smaller and more of a scorer while Chamberlain seems to be a perfect outside winger with a very good touch on the ball and exceptional passing skills.

With Theo dying to play up front and Arsenal having many of its best players injured I say why not start him up front with Van Persie?

Gervinho has been unbelievably underwhelming this year so if Arsene Wenger doesn’t want to move Theo from winger, then at least bench the Ivorian forward and replace him with Ox in the starting lineup.

Another potential dilemma is if Oxlade-Chamberlain keeps up his spectacular play, then Capello will have to consider him putting him on the English first XI for Euro 2012.

This article actually addresses the situation pretty well and shows that Theo is taking nothing for granted with his spot on the English first team.

Walcott said: “You’ve got to play well for your club and the manager will pick players on form, so I’m not going to look too far ahead after what happened to me a couple of years ago. He plays players in form and you always get a chance to play and show what you can do and hopefully we can take that into the tournament when it comes to it.

“Firstly I’m going to be concentrating on Arsenal after the poor start we’ve had. But it’s great to have qualified with England – and the fans were great in Montenegro even when we went to 2-2. This shows what it means to them.

This is one interesting story line on in the upcoming months.


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