Posted on Friday, 31st August 2012 by Rob Fisher
It is a dangerous game to venture comments during a transfer window, particularly as it draws to a close, but the cumulative news about Theo Walcott’s contract situation deserves some mention.
If what we are hearing is correct, and Theo:
A) Has not signed a new contract despite the club’s so-called ‘ultimatum’. And b) Is indeed staying till the end of the season on an ‘amicable’ basis – with the intention of trying to negotiate a deal somewhere between the 75k mark the club has allegedly offered and the 100k he allegedly wants, then I can only say, with Laurel and Hardy, that this is another fine mess the Arsenal management team has landed us with.
At a time when the old wounds of Samir Nasri, Gael Clichy and Cesc Fabregas still pain us and the fresher injury of Robin van Persie departing for Manchester is still high on our minds, why, oh why, would Arsenal choose to go down this road? It makes no sense at all.
For a start, it tends to suggest he called the management team’s bluff: sign or be sold was the tough (and actually the right) message. That clearly hasn’t happened.
What makes things worse is we are now faced with the unedifying spectacle of this set of negotiations dragging on through to the end of the January window, with the constant speculation of ‘will he/won’t he’ sounding a large note of uncertainty throughout the club at a time when the new players need stability and balance as they gel with their team-mates.
There is the further question as to whether he is actually worth it.
His performances are inconsistent: great pace, but questionable decision-making when it comes to crossing the ball is there to be seen.
He is not a first-choice England starter – Roy Hodgson appears to favour The Ox over Theo in his team selections.
really worth that kind of money?
There is also the final and obvious question which is if this arrangement is on an ‘amicable’ basis, why not sit down and get the deal done here and now just like any other transfer deal we are going to have to do while the window is open?
Keeping the door open any longer than it needs to be for the press to continually question the manager and the players about the future of Theo is a huge mistake and can only have an unsettling effect on the club.
Do it, don’t do it. But don’t create another fine mess for us to deal with across the next three months.
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