Theo Walcott is working overtime as he bids to make a successful return from injury – and he already has his sights firmly set on glory next season.
The 25-year-old sustained a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament of his left knee during Arsenal’s FA Cup third-round victory against Tottenham in January.
It ruled the England international out for the rest of the campaign, but he remains positive about both his and the team’s prospects – both this term and next.
“I miss everyone as you want to be back on the pitch with your team-mates,” Walcott told Arsenal.com. “But I think next season will be a massive one for myself and the team.
If we win the FA Cup, which we have a great chance to do with the way we are playing, the players are going to want more trophiesTheo Walcott
“If we win the FA Cup, which we have a great chance to do with the way we are playing, the players are going to want more trophies. I think the first one is so important - once you win that, you’ll win more and more. I’m pretty sure of that.
“It would be great for the boss to win a trophy again, too. He’s shown so much belief in us throughout the years. If we don’t play well, he always reflects it back on him, even though it’s our job to go out there each week and try to perform.
“That just shows how much faith he has in us all and it’s really important to him. The years just before I arrived here were unbelievable and he wants that again.”
Walcott’s injury proved to be a major blow to the Gunners’ title bid, but he feels the absence of other key players were just as damaging.
“Losing Aaron [Ramsey] and then Mesut [Ozil] and Jack [Wilshere] soon afterwards, the boss admitted it was difficult for us to cope,” he said. “If you take three main players out of a team, it’s going to affect you.
“It was sad for everyone to get injured around the same time but you deal with that as a squad. You want to try and keep your main players fit and sadly we couldn’t.”