VIDEO: Walcott keen to keep it going
Monday, 07 February, 2011
England winger wants his fine form to continue.
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by Nicholas Veevers
Click here to watch the video of the press conference.
Theo Walcott is looking to keep his good form going at international level, when he lines up against Denmark in Copenhagen on Wednesday.
The Arsenal man has had a good season for both club and country so far, after bouncing back from the disappointment of missing out on a World Cup place last summer. Looking back now, Walcott believes that actually proved to be a good thing for him, allowing him a break over the close season before returning for the new campaign with a renewed vigour.
“I had a good pre-season and the break has helped me I think,” he revealed. “I started out the season brightly and it’s always nice to know that the Manager has still got faith in me.
“I didn’t go to the World Cup, so I got the rest, mentally as well as physically. I felt that I needed that after the ups and downs in my career, so it might have done me a favour and the Manager still has that faith to play me when he can.
“I’m trying to work hard for Arsenal and I’m happy to be playing week-in and week-out there and it’s great support that the managers are showing me.”
Walcott also took great heart from hearing the quotes from Fabio Capello recently that with hindsight, he felt that he should’ve taken the former Southampton man with him to South Africa. After being a regular in Capello’s team since the start of the season, Walcott is now hoping his continued form will ensure a spot in the side against Denmark and further beyond.
“It was nice to hear that (Capello’s comment) and it’s helped me out this season,” he admitted. “It shows that the Manager is taking some responsibility for what he did. It was his decision to make, and I respected that. But it’s great to hear as a player. I want to try and help him now, by playing well for England.
“I want to try and keep my position on the right-wing. There is a lot of competition there, and I think I need to grab a goal after not scoring since Croatia.
“As long as the team wins and we put in a good performance, it’s important. We have the qualifier next month, so a good performance here will be a decent start. Hopefully I can grab a goal or an assist on Wednesday night now.”
With the next Euro qualifier coming against Wales in March, Walcott also believes this game comes at an ideal time for England. The last game brought a disappointing reverse against France last November and this get-together will be important ahead of the trip to Cardiff.
“It’s great for us to try and bond together as a squad,” he added. “We’ve got qualifiers next month, so if we can get the basics right here, get the performances right in the team and win, we can build on that for the next game.
“It’s a massive game for us and I think all of the lads are ready for it and that’s all we can do.
“Denmark will be a tough place to go, but if we get the right result, it can only be a great experience for us all, as we’ll be going to similar places in the next year.
“It’s a good time for these friendlies. It’s a chance to forget about your club and concentrate on the national team and that’s what I’m doing now.”
Given Arsenal’s result at the weekend, when Walcott scored the opening goal against Newcastle to spark a 4-0 half-time lead only to see the game finish 4-4 at full-time, the getaway with England comes at a good time.
“After a disappointing result with the club, it’s nice to come away and work hard with England,” he said. “It’s a good chance for the Manager to look at some new players and try them out, let them come through and express themselves.
“I think the Manager is building a good team and squad, there are lots of young players coming through and there’s a good balance with the experience as well.”