Walcott’s Contract Issue is mostly about Money By Twig
Walcott had recently claimed that his contract extension issue is tied to the manager trying him in a striker’s position. Wenger had recently began acceding to this request by playing Walcott as a striker for two consecutive games. He also played him as a striker in the last few minutes against Spurs.
If that is the major reason why Walcott is refusing to sign, then he would probably have signed by now, since the manager is beginning to show faith in him as a striker. However he hasn’t and the player laughably claims that that ‘these things take time’. No, they don’t necessarily have to Theo: the quartet of Ramsey, Gibbs, Wilshere and the Ox only recently signed contract extensions – and without much drama.
Wenger, perhaps unknowingly, gave a hint as to what the problem is when he recently said, “At the end of the day, can you pay what the player wants? And does it fit with your wage structure?” This possibly means that if Arsenal grant Walcott’s request it may see them being unfaithful to their wage structure, which could sow seeds of discontent in the squad.
Having played for Arsenal, it is unlikely that Walcott will want to play for any EPL side except United, Chelsea, City and maybe Liverpool. However, Liverpool are on the verge of signing Sturridge which makes a move for Walcott more unlikely. It’s highly unlikely that United, City or Chelsea will be ready to consistently play Theo as a striker; it seems his best shot at converting into a striker is at Arsenal.
If signing Walcott means Arsenal would break their wage structure, then I think he should leave. After all, we’ve lost better players in Nasri, Cesc and RVP. Wenger shouldn’t allow him to go for free and we should try and get whatever we can from interested clubs this January. I don’t think Arsenal fans will mind too much if Walcott’s replacement happens to be Lopez or Isco. Zaha also looks very promising and could mature into a monster player under Wenger’s watch.