In today’s news roundup, we have several statements from manager Arsene Wenger, who has spoken out regarding the Walcott transfer saga. The manager has directly contradicted the winger’s statement that he has not been approached for talks. It looks like this contract battle will be a prolonged and ugly one.
In other stories, Danny Welbeck has spoken out about his success at the national level, and has expressed his happiness with his current run of form. Also, Lukas Podolski has hit out at the Italian media and the manager held back no punches when criticising FA Chairman Greg Dyke’s plans regarding English football’s future. All this and more to catch up with today.
The Walcott saga: Will it ever end?
Arsenal and England forward Theo Walcott’s contract difficulties look set to continue in the near future. After rumours of a bust up between him and the manager and Liverpool’s apparent interest in the 25-year-old, the winger took to Twitter to rubbish the claims and say that he had had no falling out with Wenger. However, Walcott then went on to claim that he had not been approached by the club for contract talks, something that Wenger has denied.
Heaven knows what will happen over the summer, but maybe it is time for Wenger to make the call to Dortmund. Just saying.
Welbeck credits Arsenal for good England performances
Former Manchester United man Danny Welbeck is a changed player since he made the switch to Arsenal at the start of the season. It is remarkable how confident and assured he has become with the regular playing time that he has been given and his good performances at the club have been rewarded with several England caps. And the player has been quick to credit the club for his successes, praising the freedom and support that he receives at the club. The player had this to say:
When you are playing regularly, you feel a lot sharper on the pitch.
Once you play regularly, it just becomes second nature to do things on the pitch. I feel match-sharp and that is important.
Lukas Podolski’s war in Italy
On-loan Arsenal man Lukas Podolski has not enjoyed the best of form since moving to Inter over the January transfer window. He is yet to find the net for his new club, and the media have been quick to pounce on him, reporting him to be the ‘second worst signing’ in the Serie A.
However, Podolski has hit out at his critics, claiming that their harsh judgements will hinder rather than help him find his form:
People keep bringing up how the Italian media looks at me.
What can I do about it? Should I just dig myself into the ground and give up playing football?
Wenger accuses Greg Dyke of trying to ‘protect the mediocre’
The FA chairman this week voiced his desire to have the homegrown quota placed on every Premier League club altered, in order to produce more young English talent. He pointed to how the numbers of English players in the top leagues has dropped drastically over the past few years and said that urgent measures were required.
However, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger criticised the proposals and said that the only way to make football grow was by increasing the competition, rather than imposing quotas:
I believe that we are in the world of competition. Competition means who of you or me is the best one. We have to accept that.
That means as well that the rules of the game must be structured to favour the best. Or we are not in a competition anymore.
So we can say one of two things – we protect the mediocre or we produce the best players.
Other interesting stories on allarsenal.com