Coming off the bench for the final 32 minutes on Tuesday, it was pretty clear that Theo Walcott was playing for a place at Euro 2016.
After failing to start in both of the friendlies this international break, Walcott had watched on and seen the likes of Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy make big impressions on the international stage.
Now 42 caps into his England career, Walcott’s failed to ever nail down a place in the side.
The Arsenal forward looked sharp playing from the right on Tuesday but not sharp enough. He wanted the ball but couldn’t find much space to make runs or beat his marker when he was picked out. A disappointing half an hour passed by without any real incident as England surrendered their lead and lost 2-1 at home to the Netherlands.
Now it is very difficult to see Theo Walcott heading to the European Championships this summer. If fit, five forwards are ahead of him.
The England captain is the first name on the plane if fit, regardless of form. He has tournament experience and international pedigree. Even if he doesn’t start he is guaranteed to make the squad.
Injury problems are the only thing that will keep Sturridge from the tournament. He’s stayed fit for over a month now, his longest spell on the pitch in a very long time. He’s England’s most talented striker and has to go to France.
A favourite of Roy Hodgson and on red-hot form for Arsenal, Welbeck has come back after 10 months out and been superb. He has a few more weeks to improve his fitness and, as long as he does, there’s no chance of him being left at home.
Hodgson has started Welbeck in both of his two tournaments as England manager. He can also play wide.
The Premier League’s top goalscorer this season and an all-around forward, Kane is creative as well as being consistent when he finds a chance to strike. Quite simply certain to be on his way to the Euros.
Vardy scored twice in as many appearances during the international break. His blistering pace troubles any defence, meaning England can replace what Walcott offers even if he’s left at home.
With 19 Premier League goals this season, the media wouldn’t let Hodgson get away with leaving Vardy at home.
As you can see, Walcott seems to have little chance unless there are injuries between now and the end of May.
If he could fire Arsenal to the title now, well, surely Hodgson couldn’t say no? Your move, Theo. One last chance.