Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has told the Arsenal matchday programme that he wants to show Arsene Wenger why he ‘needs to be playing’ after his form plonked him on the bench.

It’s safe to say that in the five years since the Ox arrived at the club from Southampton he has been a frustrating player. Showing glimpses of magnificence interwoven with a tendency to be careless in possession alongside a spate of knee injuries means that we’ve yet to see what sort of player we truly have on our hands.

Still just 23, Alex enjoyed a great pre-season, but he often does and that can be no indicator of the season that lies ahead of him. Hopefully the 33 appearances he made last season have gone some way to preparing him for a full campaign this.

“I know that the next best thing I can do after starting a match is to make a difference when called upon and show why I could have been playing from the start,” Oxlade-Chamberlain said.

WATFORD, ENGLAND - AUGUST 27: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain of Arsenal in action during the Premier League match between Watford and Arsenal at Vicarage Road on August 27, 2016 in Watford, England. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)
WATFORD, ENGLAND – AUGUST 27: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain of Arsenal in action during the Premier League match between Watford and Arsenal at Vicarage Road on August 27, 2016 in Watford, England. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

“I did that, I had a positive effect on the game [against Liverpool] and that’s what I need to do in my position. You always need to take your chances to prove yourself but, at the same time, this is my sixth season here and the manager knows what I’m about.

“I really want to push on and show why I need to be playing.

“At this point in my career people know what my capabilities are and I just need to get the games.

“I’ve been here since 2011 now though, and I’m starting to feel like more of a senior player.

“You want to be able to push on and feel your worth in the dressing room by playing as much as you can.

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Writer. Feminist. Dreamer. Gooner. Owner of DailyCannon.com, writing about Arsenal since 2008. Sometimes found in the Guardian, Vice.com & elsewhere talking queer issues, politics & football. If in doubt, assume sarcasm.