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Arsenal Complete Walcott Signing

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Arsenal have completed the signing of Southampton starlet Theo Walcott for an initial fee of £5 million.

 

That figure could rise to £12 million, depending on club and international appearances, and the 16-year-old will link up with the Premiership outfit immediately.

 

He has initially joined the club as a scholar and will only sign full professional forms when he celebrates his 17th birthday on March 16.

 

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger says that he is delighted to have signed the youngster, telling the club's official website: "Theo Walcott is a very young player, but has already shown in his performances for Southampton that he is a talented player with huge potential.

 

"I also like the fact that he is a versatile player who is incredibly dedicated, shows great determination to succeed and is blessed with electric pace. We are delighted Theo has signed for the club and will make a fantastic addition to our squad.”

 

Walcott himself added: "I’m so pleased to be joining Arsenal, a club I have admired for a long time. Coming to Arsenal will give me the opportunity to work with world class players every day and play football at the highest possible level.

 

"It’s a strange day, because I’m also very sad to be moving from Southampton. I’m leaving many friends and some great coaches who have been so important to my career so far, but I leave with many great memories from the club.

 

"I’m now really looking forward to meeting my new team-mates and working hard as an Arsenal player.”

 

Saints chairman Rupert Lowe was understandably downbeat about the deal, however, confessing that he may have made a mistake in placing Walcott's talents in the shop window at such an early stage.

 

"We are bitterly disappointed," he admitted. "The purpose of developing the best academy in the country is not to sell scholars to larger clubs.

 

"We have done everything to keep Theo at Southampton but his family and advisors are determined that he leave this club and go to Arsenal.

 

“Theo has shown what he is capable of in his first season of senior football and I know every Saints fan will feel let down.

 

“We have been put in a situation where, (on the advice of Theo's advisors) we either negotiated compensation with Theo’s preferred club or faced ending up in front of the Football League Appeals Committee following cancellation.

 

"The largest upfront award that body has ever made was £400,000.  Had Theo joined an overseas club, the situation could have been even worse with no appeal committee and payment only of Fifa compensation on a set scale.

 

"Sometimes you have to be a pragmatist."

 

Lowe went on to add that, although he feels the transfer highlights a loophole which needs closing, he also accepts that some fans will blame him for the prodigy's departure.

 

"I have no doubt that I will be blamed for this situation by a part of the fan base but if the board and I have been at fault; it has been in playing and therefore showcasing a young player who is not under a full professional contract," he continued.

 

“The loophole this episode has revealed needs to be remedied by the football establishment as a matter of urgency before the Academy system is discredited. Perhaps England should move to a system such as that in the Czech Republic where young players can be signed as a professional at 16.

 

"The game needs young people like Theo but this won't happen if the clubs who produce them suffer the same fate as we would in this case."

 

It had been rumoured that Walcott could return to St Mary's in a loan deal, but that will not happen as FA rules do not permit the loaning of a scholar, while Arsenal are understood to want sole responsibility for the player's future development.

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Good luck to him.  If he wants to become a top player he's gone to exactly the right place IMO.

82338[/snapback]

I'd definately agree with that, hense why he rejected more money from Chelski to go there, and his style of play suites Arsenal perfectly...

 

Lowe sounds very bitter towards Walcott though, he should remember that Walcott insisted on making sure Southampton got moey as he could have went for a fraction of the price under tribunal

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Good luck to him.  If he wants to become a top player he's gone to exactly the right place IMO.

82338[/snapback]

 

Well, as long as he isn't taking the Jermaine Pennant route...

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On this point, of all the clubs in the Premiership, I admire/envy Arsenal the most. The setup that Wenger has couldn't be more professional in terms of training, injury treatment etc. And they play brilliant football. You just know that if a player goes there he'll be given every chance possible to realise his potential.

 

Newcastle, on the other hand.... :lol:

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Good luck to him.  If he wants to become a top player he's gone to exactly the right place IMO.

82338[/snapback]

 

Well, as long as he isn't taking the Jermaine Pennant route...

82345[/snapback]

 

Well yeah, he has to want it himself...

Edited by Gemmill

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Good luck to him.  If he wants to become a top player he's gone to exactly the right place IMO.

82338[/snapback]

 

Well, as long as he isn't taking the Jermaine Pennant route...

82345[/snapback]

 

Well yeah, he has to want it himself...

82348[/snapback]

 

No, really? :lol: Let's just hope for him he isn't taking the Jerm....

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Good luck to him.  If he wants to become a top player he's gone to exactly the right place IMO.

82338[/snapback]

 

Well, as long as he isn't taking the Jermaine Pennant route...

82345[/snapback]

 

Well yeah, he has to want it himself...

82348[/snapback]

 

No, really? :mellow: Let's just hope for him he isn't taking the Jerm....

82350[/snapback]

 

:lol:

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Good luck to him.  If he wants to become a top player he's gone to exactly the right place IMO.

82338[/snapback]

 

Well, as long as he isn't taking the Jermaine Pennant route...

82345[/snapback]

 

Well yeah, he has to want it himself...

82348[/snapback]

 

No, really? :huh: Let's just hope for him he isn't taking the Jerm....

82350[/snapback]

 

:mellow:

82353[/snapback]

 

 

I see that and raise a :lol:

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He hasn't yet completed one season in the championship yet; I think this move may be too much for him at the moment.

 

I understand that he's one for the future, so why didn't Arsenal let him stay at Southampton for the rest of the season? No way is he going to keep Reyes or Van Persie out of the team.

 

Anyone know how the initial fee rises?

Edited by Shearergol

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It's craaaazy money but you can't blame the lad for the fee. He seems decent enough, apparently he wanted to make sure that Southampton were never going to get shafted in the deal to thank them for his development...ahhhhhhh! :lol:

 

It goes to show the power of the press and how anyone who is half decent is overhyped these days. I feel sorry for the lad to a certain extent, the British press' love of building them up to knock them down will see him under a lot of pressure to produce the goods over the next couple of years.

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Good luck to him.  If he wants to become a top player he's gone to exactly the right place IMO.

82338[/snapback]

 

I don't agree with that one tbh. I think he'd have been better off going to Man Utd in terms of being nurtured.

 

Richard Wright is one testament as to why I think it's a hell of a risk for him. I wish the kid well and hope he does turn out to be something special - particularly for England.

 

Personally I think he'd have been better off staying where he was for a few years to develop, but the Scummers were having none of that...

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How does his style of play suit Arsenal perfectly? I don't understand that comment.

82411[/snapback]

 

Admit it, you're just jealous because he didn't join Chelsea :lol:

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How does his style of play suit Arsenal perfectly? I don't understand that comment.

82411[/snapback]

 

Admit it, you're just jealous because he didn't join Chelsea :mellow:

82496[/snapback]

 

:lol:

 

He doesn't suit them either. Should have come to Newcastle IMO :huh:

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How does his style of play suit Arsenal perfectly? I don't understand that comment.

82411[/snapback]

 

Admit it, you're just jealous because he didn't join Chelsea :mellow:

82496[/snapback]

 

:lol:

 

He doesn't suit them either. Should have come to Newcastle IMO :huh:

82501[/snapback]

 

;)

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How does his style of play suit Arsenal perfectly? I don't understand that comment.

82411[/snapback]

 

Admit it, you're just jealous because he didn't join Chelsea :huh:

82496[/snapback]

 

:lol:

 

He doesn't suit them either. Should have come to Newcastle IMO ;)

82501[/snapback]

 

;)

82506[/snapback]

 

Do you seriously think I'm a Chelsea fan by the way? :mellow:

 

I'm a Lampard fan :razz:

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How does his style of play suit Arsenal perfectly? I don't understand that comment.

82411[/snapback]

 

Admit it, you're just jealous because he didn't join Chelsea :mellow:

82496[/snapback]

 

:lol:

 

He doesn't suit them either. Should have come to Newcastle IMO :huh:

82501[/snapback]

 

Damn right! We could coach any goals, skill, flair and ability out of him in no time. He'd soon be a "proper" player mind, and injured of course!

 

 

Of the two clubs involved he's picked the best option, but will have to see how it works out. In the past Wenger hasn't been great with young English players at all and they often end up leaving, though as he's paid this much for him he may well have a chance.

 

Should have went back to saints on loan for rest of the season though.

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How does his style of play suit Arsenal perfectly? I don't understand that comment.

82411[/snapback]

 

Admit it, you're just jealous because he didn't join Chelsea :mellow:

82496[/snapback]

 

:lol:

 

He doesn't suit them either. Should have come to Newcastle IMO :huh:

82501[/snapback]

 

Damn right! We could coach any goals, skill, flair and ability out of him in no time. He'd soon be a "proper" player mind, and injured of course!

 

 

Of the two clubs involved he's picked the best option, but will have to see how it works out. In the past Wenger hasn't been great with young English players at all and they often end up leaving, though as he's paid this much for him he may well have a chance.

 

Should have went back to saints on loan for rest of the season though.

82553[/snapback]

 

 

I agree that between Arsenal and Chelsea he's picked the right club, but I think Man United and even Liverpool would have been better for him. Can't believe neither was interested.

 

Is the rule still about that you're not allowed to loan a player straight back? Didn't Spurs and Leeds try it with Robinson?

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Guest Sima

Arsenal seem to have the best coaches in the country the way they have brought some players on.

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Think you're right on that loaning issue...

82563[/snapback]

 

It may well be the case, though god knows why as it doesn't do any harm!

82582[/snapback]

 

Agreed, it's a bloody stupid rule :(

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