Arsenal have set Theo Walcott’s price tag for a permanent transfer at £17.8m, however, there are various Italian clubs interested in a loan deal, according to reports.
TuttoMercatoWeb.com write that AC Milan, Inter Milan and AS Roma would all consider a temporary move this January. English clubs willing to take the winger on a permanent deal are still ahead at the moment.
TMW don’t list any Premier League clubs specifically, but they say there’s no shortage of offers.
It’s no big secret why the media are linking Walcott with a move away at the moment.
England play in the World Cup this summer, and the winger is currently struggling to make the squad.
Gareth Southgate has already made it clear with his treatment of Jack Wilshere that you have to be starting league games to get in. The 28-year-old’s zero starts in 22 games isn’t going to go down well.
As well as that, the former Southampton man is performing pretty well when called upon.
He hasn’t always impressed supporters, but with four goals and four assists in eight starts (plus one penalty win), he’s not doing too badly.
If Arsenal can afford to keep Walcott on the bench, even during the festive period, he’s clearly not a key player right now. So a move isn’t impossible.
Then again, Arsene Wenger said in his pre-Nottingham Forest press conference that he wants the winger to stay.
He clearly hasn’t given up on the player’s future with the Gunners, or at least that’s what he wants prospective buyers to think.
"I want him to stay" Wenger on Theo Walcott. "I heard about that [Southampton interest], but I want him to stay"
— Daily Cannon (@DailyCannon) January 5, 2018
Walcott, meanwhile, has reportedly been touting himself around Europe.
Personally, I’d prefer the permanent transfer option, even to a rival Premier League club.
Arsenal have too many players on loan who will probably never come back to the first team. Look at Lucas Perez, or Joel Campbell, or Wojciech Szczesny’s two loans before he left permanently.
The Gunners need to cut ties and move on, before their players lose whatever value they have.