By Chris Harris

Arsène Wenger led the applause for Theo Walcott on Tuesday night but Arsenal's manager has urged the football world not to expect too much, too soon from the teenager.

Walcott's dazzling run from the edge of his own penalty area set up a tap-in for Emmanuel Adebayor seven minutes from the end of the Champions League Quarter-Final at Anfield. Liverpool's late riposte earned victory and the headlines, but the 19-year-old's moment of magic had the critics drooling.

Wenger enjoyed Walcott's assist as much as anyone and is weighing up whether to start the young forward against Manchester United on Sunday. However, the Frenchman warned that Walcott must be given time to fulfill his undoubted potential.

"Theo started last Saturday and nobody talked about him on Sunday, then he had a big impact on Tuesday," said Wenger.

"You have to accept that the player has to mature to have an impact at this level consistently.

"What he has done on Tuesday night deserves plenty of credit, it is absolutely fantastic and I am happy for him, but you want him to be a team player who makes a consistent contribution and keeps that special thing that he can produce.

"Then he will not only be a good player for Arsenal Football Club, he will be a world-class player.

"I think that's in him and you want that to come out with him, but maybe you have to be a little bit patient."

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Chris Harris 11 Apr 2008