By Chris Harris

The year 2011 has been one to remember for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. According to Arsène Wenger, 2012 could be even better.

The 18-year-old moved from Southampton to Arsenal during the summer and has already made his mark in the first team with goals on his Carling Cup and Champions League debuts at Emirates Stadium.

Oxlade-Chamberlain's rise to prominence has sparked speculation that he could break into the England squad for next summer's European Championship. Wenger intends to give him opportunities sooner rather than later.

"In 2012, at the beginning of the year, he will play games," said Wenger.

"He is not far. He is a talented boy, it's all there - he just needs that toughness in the games and because every game for us is so tight… the other night, again, I could have brought him on and you have the hesitation to do it. But you do not want him to be a little bit overawed by the intensity of the game.

"He is ready to play. He is just missing that experience at the top level. You have to throw him into a few games."

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27 Dec 2011