Originally written December 29, 2012 on 90Soccer:
Picimg_football__arsenal_d11c
Arsenal 7-3 Newcastle United Arsenal might have found his #9 in the name of Theo Walcott, whose contact expires in June. The ex-winger is a key offensive player and scored a hat-trick this Saturday, helped by Giroud who scored a pair in 3 minutes to secure the three points for the Gunners. Coach Wenger quotes: on Theo Walcott… He has done very well and it just typifies what I think he can do. He can play through the middle, I am convinced of that, and he can only get stronger in there. Overall I am pleased with his performance. on his finishing… Yes, determination and running into the box, dribbling, short dribbling. I believe he is a good finisher, that he has learned a lot because he is an intelligent player. And because he is intelligent, he will continue to improve. on his contract talks… You know, the intensity of my desire [to extend his contract] is exactly the same as it was before the game. My desire is to extend his contract, he belongs here and hopefully we can do it. on how Saturday’s performance affects the situation… I don’t know, I think the commitment for a club is a long-term process. I don’t think it should depend on one game. Should he have had a disastrous game today, it would not have altered my determination to extend his contract and to sign him. That does not depend on one game. on the influence of Thierry Henry… I believe Theo takes advice from Thierry, of course, because Thierry has played in that position. But Thierry arrived yesterday in training, he didn’t practise with us, but it’s good when you need to talk to someone who has played in there. [Theo's first goal] was a Thierry-type goal. on the ongoing negotiations… I do not want to talk about that [the negotiations], it is enough in the public place. I believe there is no need to talk about it. Yes [I understand why people want to talk about it] because he was man of the match today and he made the decision. But I would like to talk more about his footballing qualities than about money and speculation. on the fans’ response to Theo… I think he loves the club and the club loves him, and the reciprocity in love is the most difficult to find. on Olivier Giroud… Yes, he came on very sharp. He looked dangerous on crosses, he looked mobile, technically sound. He had as well an impact when he came on. on Newcastle’s performance… I agree with you [that they played their part]. The game was not as comfortable as the result indicates. We suffered for big parts in the game, especially in the first half when I felt we played with the handbrake, we were a bit nervous, not free of the chest. We had problems to win the ball back from them. Every time they came back but we kept going and in the end of course it became easy, but it was a difficult game for us. on his concern over the goals conceded… Yes, because we were three times in front and three times they came back, but they are a team that is good going forward. I was impressed today by Ba, he had an excellent game. The midfield as well, I felt that Marveaux had a very good game. Tiote as well, they were strong. They are a strong team. http://www.arsenal.com  
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