Arsenal forward Theo Walcott has praised the manager following Arsenal’s qualification for the Round of 16 in the Champions League, and also expressed his opinion that the top teams of Europe would not want to face Arsenal in the next stage (via Arsenal.com). The Gunners emerged victorious over Olympiacos in a highly efficient performance that is all the more memorable because of the injury problems plaguing the team at the moment.
Walcott, who is just returning from an injury picked up in the Capital One Cup, started the game on the right wing, and although he did not find the net, he still posed a threat from time to time. It is good to see the Englishman up and about once more, since he has been a rather potent weapon up front for manager Arsene Wenger this season. If the manager is able to convince him to play on the right wing more frequently, then we will have a truly fearsome front three once Sanchez returns from injury.
Speaking to Arsenal Player, Walcott had this to say, “It was very important that everyone was involved. The manager as well, he was key to our success and we have to give credit to him. The sort of attitude we had in the dressing room was ‘never give up’.
“We never give up and you should have seen them buzzing right at the end in the dressing room. That is the spirit we want in this team. It is the spirit that we can push on and improve. Europe will have seen that performance and I think a lot of teams will want to avoid us now after that.
“We have got the character, the strength in depth to actually make upsets. Whoever we get in the draw, we will be confident, raring to go and I’m sure we will get players fit as well. The squad is very good.
“As a team, we were focused and knew the job in hand. We obviously made it very difficult for ourselves in the games before this one but you have to give credit to everyone in that dressing room, even the players that didn’t play.”
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The Gunners will not be lacking in confidence as they aim to end the year on a high by climbing to the top of the Premier League table. This weekend’s game against Aston Villa provides us a good opportunity to do that, and will be followed by next week’s top of the table clash against Manchester City. Victories in these two games could not only propel us to the top, but also send out a clear message that the team are ready to mount a serious title challenge against all comers.