Written by gunnerN5
January 20th 2006 was an exciting day in our history; Arsene Wenger secured the signature of Theo Walcott on an initial pre-contract agreement to sign a professional contract on his 17th birthday. Even at the tender age of 15 Theo was touted as one of, if not the, best youngster in English football and he was now an Arsenal player.
Now here we are almost 5 years and 134 games later (72 as a starter and 62 as a sub) into his Arsenal career. Has he proven to be the potential star we had anticipated and yearned for or is he still a work in progress; or worst still is he a waste of space?
He has provided many fantastic highlights and his speed frightens opposition defenses, but his lack of consistency and sub standard statistical measurements are sadly underwhelming.
His ability to leave defenses in his wake and deliver crosses is commendable, even exceptional, but many of his crosses go astray, along with the possibility of creating good goal scoring opportunities.
How many times do we see him speed up to a defender and then have no idea on how to get around him, how many of his passes go astray; how many good moves break down because of his poor decision making?
In his 134 appearances, 72 as a starter and 62 as a sub he has totaled 18 goals and 20 assists, if we consider a goal as 1 point and an assist as half a point then he has earned .209 points per appearance.
One would believe that with his speed he would be best suited as a sub coming on for the last 20/25 minutes against tired defenses but the stats don’t back up this theory as they are almost identical as both a sub and a starter.
Most of our subs have higher points earned as starters than they do as sub’s which makes sense given the increased amounts of time that they are on the pitch – but Theo defies the logic – why?
His contribution level as a starter is almost the same as a sub and this simply should not be, especially with his outstanding speed. One would have to believe that at least his assists would increase given that we score so many goals in the last 20 minutes – but that is not the case – why?
Sadly I don’t have answers, simply questions, but even sadder it would appear that nobody else has either. It remains a wish and hope situation.
Since I wrote this I have done some more exhaustive/accurate research into this season’s goal scoring statistics and the results are quite revealing.
I would have preferred to use minutes played but I could not find a reliable enough source so I settled for the combination of games and substitutions to arrive at appearances – not ideal, but still useful data.
It should be of no surprise to any of us that Nasri is number 1 – closely followed by Chamakh at number 2 – but surprise, surprise Walcott is number 3 – why?
Does that refute all of the previous comments?
The answer to the question is no, as he got all of his points in the first 3 games of the season and in his last 5 appearances he shown his typical inconsistency and earned zero points.
It should also be noted that Sagna has scored more points than Bendtner and that Fabianski has more points than Clichy or Rosciky who just scrapes onto the chart in last place.
All of the stats are EPL only.