The Englishman has been out of action for two months due to an abdominal injury that required minor surgery, and in his absence the Gunners have struggled to fill his void out wide.
The likes of Ramsey, Wilshere and Rosicky have played on the wings with a lack of out and out wide men available, but the return of Walcott will inject some much needed pace and width.
Wenger believes Walcott adds another dimension to the Gunners attack as he looks to get in behind defences and has been missed throughout his unexpected absence despite Arsenal’s impressive form.
Wenger told Arsenal Player:
He is one of the players who goes behind [the defence] without the ball. Strikers who get behind the defenders is a very important quality and Theo [Walcott] has that quality.
Of course you miss a player like Theo Walcott. Theo had a good start to the season, he scored goals, he provided chances and had assists. He can always give you a different option in the game and that is of course vital.
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You always want to have a perfect balance [in attack]. If you look at our results our balance was not too bad.
But Theo has different qualities to other players and I am very pleased that he’s back.
The return of the Englishman is certainly welcomed with Podolski and Oxlade-Chamberlain still a way off returning. Although Walcott hasn’t been able to return to his goal scoring best this season, his assists have been vital over the last several years and with Ozil well integrated the possibilities for devastating through balls are mouth watering.
One player who will greatly benefit from Walcott’s return is Olivier Giroud who has lacked continuous decent crosses into the box of late. Bacary Sagna has been excellent but he’s not been able to consistently get forward as a winger would.
Arsenal need to bounce back after the loss to Manchester United, so the Englishman’s availability is a big boost as the Gunners seek to gun down the Saints at the Emirates. He scares defences and keeps them on their toes at all times. Because of his lightening pace he can be a distraction for defenders and help to stretch the opposition.
When we fielded a variety of central midfielders on the flanks they often cut inside too often and the middle became congested however with Walcott and Cazorla the Gunners can look to get wider and get balls into the box for the onrushing Giroud.
Just like Wenger, I’m certainly pleased he’s back.