Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has compared youngster Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to Manchester United and England star Wayne Rooney. These comments come after the 18-year-old’s excellent display at the weekend in a 7-1 victory over Blackburn Rovers.
It was a performance that showed the increasingly fast development of the talented winger and many looking at the best odds on european championship 2012 are suggesting that he should be taken to Poland and Ukraine by England.
Wenger stopped short of saying just that, but the Gunners boss did admit that he was extremely impressed with how quickly Oxlade-Chamberlain has taken to life in the first-team.
The Frenchman said: “I feel that is always a brand of top players. They just play. When you saw Rooney start he played like it was natural; the same with (Cesc) Fabregas. They are happy on the football pitch and comfortable.”
“I feel Oxlade-Chamberlain could play central midfield (and) he could play second striker because he has something that is exceptional – he has a short back-lift and so when he has a shot on goal it’s difficult to block.
‘He can go right and left and he is the kind of guy who feels comfortable on the football pitch, not nervous.”
At the start of the season you think: “I will play him 20 games, maybe 25.mThat’s what happened to us last year with Wilshire.”
‘When they deliver a performance they play 45 (games) and then they play for the national team and then they get injured.”
“It’s about trying to find the right balance between having confidence and not being too early and too much under pressure.”
Arsenal’s leading scorer Robin Van Persie was also full of praise for the young Englishman, saying that he will no doubt go on to have a fantastic career for club and country.
The Dutchman said: “In the future, (he can) definitely (play for England). He’s a big prospect. Everyone is enjoying watching him. I do, you do and he brings something extra to the game and people just love it.”
“He’s not someone who thinks about negatives, just positives, and you can enjoy the game like that.”
As ever, Oxlade-Chamberlain is a player that will be watched closely by everyone involved in English football. He is a bright talent and one which many look forward to watching each week.