Arsenal 2 Tottenham 0: Walcott can shine up front, says Wenger
Arsenal 2 Tottenham 0: Arsene Wenger praises Theo Walcott's display up front as Gunners reach FA Cup fourth round
Arsene Wenger was left impressed by Theo Walcott’s display up front as Arsenal downed local rivals Tottenham to reach the FA Cup fourth round.
With first-choice forwards Olivier Giroud and Nicklas Bendtner unavailable, Wenger opted to give the England international the chance to play in his preferred central striking position.
Today Serge Gnabry has shown that he is quality. He had a very good game
And despite watching the 24-year-old be carried off on a stretcher with an apparent knee injury, Wenger was pleased with Walcott’s contribution.
“I liked what he did today because he played before in that role,” said Wenger. “Today he added purpose and commitment, more decisiveness to his game, and more fighting attitude.
“With that, he looks every time he improves in that position and with the quality of players behind him, he can be very dangerous in that position.”
Santi Cazorla fired the home side into the lead at Emirates Stadium when he drilled home Serge Gnabry’s pass in the 31st minute.
Arsenal then doubled their advantage when Tomas Rosicky dispossessed Danny Rose before breaking through on goal and calmly chipping the ball over Hugo Lloris in the 62nd minute.
And Wenger was also full of praise for the 18-year-old Gnabry, who produced a sparkling display in north London.
“He has had some good games, but maybe we were not at home,” Wenger said of Gnabry.
“He played well at Swansea, at Crystal Palace, and overall today he has shown that he is quality. He had a very good game.
“He is a very young boy, he [was born in] 1995 so that shows you that he is very young and he has the quality. He is bright, he has a good football brain.
“I am a strong believer in Serge, because I integrated him at the start of last season but let’s not make superstars with one game.
“The top level is [about] consistency but I believe the ingredients are there. he has to show he can turn up with these performances in every game.”