Theo Walcott to play for Arsenal this week - report

Theo Walcott

Theo Walcott will feature for Arsenal Under-21’s on Friday.

Walcott has been out of action for over nine months, having suffered a cruciate knee ligament injury in January of this year.

Having been removed from action during an FA Cup third round tie with local rivals Tottenham Hotspur at the turn of the year, the quick forward missed this summer’s World Cup, as well as the Gunners' successful FA Cup campaign.

The 25-year-old only returned to training this week, and his appearance for the Under-21’s represents a quick turnaround for the forward, who had not even played a five-a-side game until that point.

The Telegraph are reporting the story, claiming that, although unlikely to feature for the full 90 minutes, head coach Arsene Wenger is keen for Walcott to get at least an hour of playing time under his belt. He would also be available for this weekend’s fixture against Hull City, but nothing more than a role on the bench would be likely for the Englishman on Saturday.

The forward’s return comes at a perfect time for the Gunners, with the North Londoners falling behind in the Premier League title race due to a crippling injury crisis. A number of attacking stars are out of action, and Walcott’s return to the set-up will add a goal threat that has been absent for much of the season.

The return from action in the coming weeks could also see Walcott return to the England international set-up for the next round of fixtures in November, with the Three Lions facing Slovenia and Scotland next month.

If Wenger decides to rest Walcott for a further week, he could be set for his first-team return next weekend, with the Gunners travelling to the North East to face Sunderland.

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