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MrJibbles

afc Theo Walcott sees action on two fronts

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Theo Walcott would like to be involved in Grass Roots Football Live this week, but has a rather good excuse for missing it as he is in line to play for England.That is not to say that the Arsenal teenager considers himself above returning, when the occasion requires, to where he has come from. After being named in Fabio Capello’s senior squad for this week’s friendly internationals with the United States and Trinidad & Tobago, Walcott “dropped back down” to England Under21 to score in their recent 2-0 win over Wales, a dual honour that he hopes to reprise next summer when Stuart Pearce’s team seek to win the European Under21 Championship finals in Sweden.Having sat out the tournaments of the past two summers, Walcott is desperate to be involved in the next two. Controversially selected by Sven-Göran Eriksson, presumably for work experience, for the 2006 World Cup finals in Germany, when he did not make the field in any game, Walcott was encouraged to miss last summer’s under21 finals in the Netherlands in order to have an operation on an injured shoulder.Walcott watched from afar as Pearce’s team came within an elongated penalty shoot-out of reaching the final. Now he wants to be involved in the next under21 tournament, when Tom Huddlestone, Gabriel Agbonlahor, Joe Hart and David Wheater are also still eligible, which could provide a springboard for the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa. For him, there is no comedown in switching between the England junior and senior squads.Related Links“It’s just good to play really,” Walcott said. “Maybe the experience we get with the seniors will help with the under21s, because there’s quite a few of us from the under21s in the seniors. Also, it gives us the opportunity to try to win the tournament as well, if there are senior-squad players still young enough to play for the under21s who Stuart Pearce can call upon. We’ve still got to qualify [the play-offs are in October] but it’d be good to get the experience of winning a tournament under our belts.“I spoke to Stuart Pearce before the tournament last summer, when I was making the decision about my shoulder, and he said, ‘Get that sorted – your health comes first, so get yourself ready for next season’. I did feel so much better for it. I watched the semi-final with Holland and they were unlucky. Hopefully we can go one step better next time.”Not that Walcott, who turned 19 only in March, should be charged with a lack of ambition when he talks while at a senior-squad training camp about aiming to win a junior tournament. Having gained a sole senior cap, as a substitute against Hungary two years ago this week, his form for Arsenal and England Under21 has merited a call-up into Fabio Capello’s squad. “It’d be a dream come true, to play for England at Wembley this week,” he said. “I know I probably won’t start but hopefully, if I work hard and train well, I can give the manager something to think about and, if I do come on, hopefully I will do well.” And 2010? “If I work hard and play well for Arsenal, then hopefully I’ll get my chance and why not?”Walcott’s gradual emergence with England is in marked contrast to his introduction to the game when, having not played any organised football, he was catapulted from an after-school club into a professional academy within the space of a year. After six months with Swindon Town, Walcott opted against signing for Chelsea to join Southampton’s academy. “As a kid, I felt that it was all happening too quickly for me,” he said. “Chelsea invited me to be a ballboy when Liverpool, the team I supported, played at Stamford Bridge, and I got to meet all the players in the changing rooms afterwards. I had my picture taken with Michael Owen. I’ve shown it to him since and we’ve had a laugh about it. But it was the right decision to play for Southampton: it was a family club and I just wanted to play. All the coaches were brilliant,” he said, taking a breather between England training sessions. “I’m sure I wouldn’t be here now if it wasn’t for them.”Harry Redknapp gave him his senior debut, at the age of 16 years and 143 days, on the first day of the 2005-06 season, as a substitute for 17 minutes against Wolverhampton Wanderers. “He just told me to go on and do my thing,” Walcott recalled, smiling. “It was nice. Then a couple of days later, we were training, and he told me I was going to start against Leeds United. I rang my dad and he was so excited – as excited as me. I scored as well, so that was good.”Walcott lives with his parents, Don and Lynn, in his own house – “I’ll kick them out in a couple of years’ time,” he laughed – and still goes out with Melanie Slade, who was unwittingly thrust into the spotlight when her boyfriend was called up for the last World Cup. She starts university in September. “She’s studying physiotherapy,” Walcott volunteered, “so she should be able to look after me.”Walcott backs the FA’s Respect campaign. “I remember you used to get dads shouting their heads off on the touchlines,” he said. “But mine would too if I scored and I don’t think you want to stop the positive enthusiasm. But when you see the odd [professional] player having a go at referees, you know that young players will be copying them in their Sunday morning matches so I’m sure the campaign will help. If we start it now, it’ll feed down through the age groups.” Spoken like an adult. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/foo...icle4004073.ece

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having not played any organised football, he was catapulted from an after-school club into a professional academy within the space of a year.
makes sense now

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having not played any organised football, he was catapulted from an after-school club into a professional academy within the space of a year.
makes sense now
:D :D :D :D

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You laugh, but imagine how he laughing at the man who played ball from early yet watch from the stands and he plays for the national team...

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having not played any organised football, he was catapulted from an after-school club into a professional academy within the space of a year.
makes sense now
:D :D :D :D
Mocking but I think theirs some truth in it. He killed it though, some fast track route to pro footall.

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Guest Teddy Riley

Don't get why you should be laughing at Walcott...He smacked it. Lol

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Guest Teddy Riley
Don't get why you should be laughing at Walcott...He smacked it. Lol Didn't he score some stupid amount of goals at a young level for the Southhamption youth team.

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