The young lad who had the option to join either Chelsea or Arsenal and chose Arsenal. This is probably why I never really liked the lad. Until recently I had an unexplained hatred of the Gunners, something I feel was indoctrinated into me by my teacher at school, who was an overtly smug Arsenal fan. But that's beside the point and I've learnt to appreciate the Football Arsenal and Wenger play.
Anyway, Theo Walcott this season has become a very good player. Yet for me he's still a winger who can't cross a ball properly, mainly due to how Arsenal play, but his finishing until this season was never anything to write home about and he only had one asset, his pace. This season he's worked on his ability to put the ball in the back of the net, and he's not just one of those wingers who only have one trick up their sleeve, their pace. No nowadays he's a much trickier customer.
I suppose one of the reasons why Walcott has become a better Footballer is experience more than anything. For a while at Arsenal he was beginning to look like the impact sub who only turned up for the little games. Whilst he's still not a regular starter this season, it seems like not going to South Africa has spurred him on to be even better at Arsenal to prove his worth for the National team.
Wingers these days also seem to be cutting inside the box from wider positions to greater effect. Possibly a sign of the times more than anything as we saw from Robben at the World Cup. Milner and David Silva for City are also tasked with a similar role at they've had success as well. Walcott however is better than those two at getting out wide, then cutting inside to create a pass or shooting opportunity. It's a style of play that the fans love and coaches are beginning to see just how effective it can be.
This style of play that Walcott has had to adopt whilst at Arsenal (joining them as a striker rather than a Wing Forward) is something that can very much be an asset to the England National Team. It's been a while since a genuinely different type of English Football player was developed in this country, but Walcott on the right, with possibly either Milner or Ashley Young on the left Wing, could give England that extra dimension they've lacked for some time. We could even play 4-3-3 if we stick Rooney or Defoe in the middle of those two to create a very fast paced attacking line.
Still, I feel it's very early doors for Walcott. He's coming to that age now were he really needs to show to Wenger he warrants a first team start nearly every game. For me he's better than Arshavin and more effective than Nasri in that attacking 3 Wenger plays (personally I feel Nasri is a much better Central midfielder alongside Fabregas).
So Theo Walcott. I can honestly say I was wrong.