Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain ready to fight for Arsenal spot

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is taking nothing for granted and declares he is ready to fight for his place in Arsenal's first-team

alex oxlade-chamberlain
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain netted four goals for Arsenal last season Photo: Nike

alex oxlade-chamberlain

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain believes he will have a fight on his hands to tie down a regular spot in Arsenal’s starting line-up next season.

The 18-year-old midfielder earned plenty of new admirers in his first year in north London after joining from Southampton last summer, with his eye-catching displays earning him a call-up to Roy Hodgson’s England squad for Euro 2012.

Oxlade-Chamberlain made 26 appearances for Arsene Wenger’s men last term, netting four goals and providing three assists for his team-mates.

But the teenager feels that the competition for places in the Gunners first-team will be fiercer than ever next season following the arrivals of Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud – and with Jack Wilshere and Abou Diaby set to return to action after missing the majority of last season through injury.

“I am taking it step by step and the first aim is to make sure I am fully fit for the start of the season, to get the best chance to get in the team,” Oxlade-Chamberlain told Arsenal’s website.

“I know it won’t be easy. The new signings are really good while we have good talent here coming through. So if I do manage to get into the team, I need to try and stay in there.

“Being more of an attacking player, I need to score more goals and get more assists. That wins games and people notice of that. I will always put my own style on things, which is taking people on and try and be an exciting player to watch.”

And Oxlade-Chamberlain insists he will not get carried away by the impressive start to his Gunners career.

“You have to have that confidence otherwise you won’t go anywhere,” he added. “If you don’t believe in yourself, no-one else will.

“But you also have to keep your feet on the ground, realise it is a very hard league and know you cannot take your foot off the gas at any time.

“In one moment, it can go from being good to being bad. You have to make sure it doesn’t happen so you have to approach every training session and every game in the same way. That is what I will do. I will keep my head down and keep working off everyone.”

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