Walcott breaks Arsenal record - but it may not be one he wanted…

Theo Walcott

Pace-blessed Gunner made history at Emirates Stadium on Wednesday evening.

Arsenal star forward Theo Walcott may have started Wednesday's Emirates Stadium encounter with Hull City had it not been for a stomach bug he was suffering from earlier that day.

Manager Arsene Wenger had spoken about the need to limit the amount of changes to each of his match-day starting XI's to just two, maybe three at a push and the decision to omit Olivier Giroud in favour of Walcott, who is slowly returning to full fitness, could have been the preferred option over fielding Nicklas Bendtner from the off.

Starting Bendtner though by no means inhibited Arsenal's attacking play as the tall, physically-imposing Dane broke a three-year duck by claiming a goal within two minutes after heading a Carl Jenkinson cross home.

Regardless, Walcott replaced Bendtner on the 73rd minute mark and, by coming off the bench for the 95th time in his North London career, the 24-year-old surpassed Nwanko Kanu's erstwhile all-time in-house haul of 94 appearances from the bench; a record he leveled when he replaced Mesut Ozil in the concluding moments of the club's 3-0 victory over Cardiff City.

Does this punctuate his reputation as the club's super-sub, or is it merely coincidental as Wenger looks to play what could be a crucial attacker in Arsenal's push for silverware this season? After all, it was just one week ago when Here Is The City argued that the Englishman could go on to become the club's player of the season, out-performing even Aaron Ramsey.

Walcott will surely be hoping he can convince Wenger he is worthy of a regular first-team place, particularly if he recreates the form that made him so threatening last season…

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

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