By Richard Clarke
Theo Walcott believes he can still fulfil the destiny Arsène Wenger always planned for him - to play as a centre forward for Arsenal.
The 21-year-old showed his eye for goal on Saturday by netting a superb hat-trick in the 6-0 win over Blackpool at Emirates Stadium. That treble was scored from his usual position on the right wing. It is a role Walcott is still happy to play however Wenger has a legacy of moving the positions of his signings and the England international is open to change.
"The boss signed me as a striker but I'll happily play anywhere for Arsenal," he said.
"There's a lot of competition up front now with Marouane and Robin, so as long as I provide goals and pop up with one now and then I'm happy with that.
"But if the boss wants me to play up front I'm buzzing from that. I'm working in training up front so I'll go from there."
Wenger changed the positions of Emmanuel Petit, Freddie Ljungberg, Sylvain Wiltord and Gilles Grimandi during their time at Arsenal. However his most successful switch was Thierry Henry, who was predominantly a left-winger at Juventus but was always a centre forward in North London.
Walcott openly admits Henry is his hero. However it appears the former Southampton star will struggle to get tips off the New York Red Bulls striker if Wenger does make the same move.
"No, I have not spoken to him at all," said Walcott. "It's difficult to get hold of him and I'd probably have a massive phone bill as well because I'd bother him every single night! But I am sure he'll do very well out in the MLS."Copyright 2016 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source