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5 players who don't deserve to be at Arsenal anymore

Arsenal have a reputation for holding onto players for probably too long, but which 5 players should they consider getting rid of?

Top 5 / Top 10 16 Nov 2017, 15:40 IST

Manchester City v Arsenal - Premier League
Arsene Wenger tends to keep players for longer than some of his more ruthless rivals

It’s a bit harsh to label Arsenal as a club in crisis, but they’re certainly one in flux. While they currently sit 6th in the Premier League table, four losses before Christmas have probably put paid to any title hopes they may have had going into the season, and with star players Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil likely to abandon ship in the summer, the pressure is once again on Arsene Wenger.

The bottom line? Arsenal simply haven’t spent money wisely in recent seasons and for some reason, Wenger holds onto players, that other bosses would discard as dead wood, for way too long. If the Gunners ever want to challenge for the title again, they need to freshen their squad up – and they should start by getting rid of these 5 players who don't deserve a spot in the squad anymore:

#5 Theo Walcott

Arsenal v Manchester City - Premier League
Theo Walcott hasn't really lived up to his early potential

If it feels like ages since Walcott signed for Arsenal from Southampton as the most expensive teenager in British football history, well, that’s because it is. Wenger bought Walcott in back in 2006 – over a decade ago now – and he was expected to develop into one of the world’s most exciting players.

Unfortunately for all parties, that hasn’t really happened, despite a few flashes of absolute brilliance – his hat-trick for England against Croatia, his run to set up Emmanuel Adebayor in a Champions League tie with Liverpool – that showed why everyone was hyped for him to begin with.

Part of the problem with Walcott has always been the debate over which position he belongs in on the pitch. Originally a speedy winger, Walcott has often tried to push the idea that he could be Arsenal’s central striker; basically the same move that Thierry Henry made - one that turned him into a club legend and one of the best players in the world.

Sadly for Theo, he’s simply no Henry – well, either that, or Arsene Wenger simply doesn’t have the faith in him to let him try.

Injuries have hampered his progress at times, but for a man who fancies himself as a goalscorer, Walcott’s goal record just isn’t good enough – decent returns of 14 league goals in 2012/13 and 10 in 2016/17 have been surrounded by three poorer seasons that saw him score just 5.

With Alexandre Lacazette and Olivier Giroud ahead of him in the pecking order up front now, it’s probably time for Wenger to move Walcott on – if anything, it could turn out to be for the player’s own good, as at just 28, he still has time to develop, but only if he’s the focal point at a smaller club.

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