Arsene Wenger claims winger Theo Walcott is being put under “terrible pressure” to be fully fit in time for the World Cup finals in South Africa this summer.
Wenger however, remains confident the 20-year-old will make England’s World Cup squad after the striker made only his fifth Premier League start of the season in Saturday’s 2-0 home win over Sunderland.
A series of injuries to his back, knee, hamstring and ribs have hampered Walcott’s progress this season.
Wenger has already warned it will take time for Walcott to find his rhythm but firmly believes the player will be heading to South Africa as part of Fabio Capello’s squad. “The World Cup is not today,” said Wenger. “It is in June. I think he will make the squad.
“The problem is that everyone has the England national team in their mind and, because you want to bring the World Cup back to London, you want everybody to be on top today.
“They will be in the long run but when players have been out for a while it takes a while to get back to your best with confidence, sharpness and zip. That will come back with Theo.”