Arsene Wenger backs Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to make Euro 2012 squad

 

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is convinced rising star Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will make England's Euro 2012 squad if he continues his current impressive form.

Despite being just 18 years old, Oxlade-Chamberlain has made a big impression since he joined the north London club last summer from Southampton.

Wenger had intended to integrate Oxlade-Chamberlain slowly in to the Gunners side but the pacy winger has made already 16 appearances this season, scoring four goals.

The Frenchman is cautious about giving Oxlade-Chamberlain too much game time as he feels it may hamper the youngster's physical development, but he also admits he is finding it hard to resist fielding the player after his recent displays.

Oxlade-Chamberlain was omitted from Stuart Pearce's England squad for tonight's friendly against Holland at Wembley, but Wenger believes the youngster is destined to make the cut for this summer's tournament in Poland and Ukraine.

"Physically we have to monitor him because after every game he can have a little problem," Wenger said on Arsenal's website.

"We know now that a large percentage of players who play a lot of games between the ages of 18 and 21 have bony stress responses. I never expected the number to be so high.

"[It happens] because your skeleton is not completely finished and the bones are not completely developed to absorb the kinds of shocks you get in the Premier League.

"We have to be cautious about that. But you are always in a trap when the player is as good as he is, like Jack Wilshere is too.

"You cannot take him out of the team, you have to keep him there. They can win you games.

"Until the end of the season there is no problem and if he continues to play like this I am convinced he will go to Euro 2012."

One of the most pleasing aspects of Oxlade-Chamberlain, according to Wenger, is his ability to turn out in the club's biggest games despite his tender age.

The England Under-21 international has played against both Manchester sides, AC Milan and Tottenham this season and Wenger has been impressed with the performances of his hulking young winger.

"He is a little bit like a boxer in his upper body," Wenger added. "He has not played too many games up until now because he was on a learning curve but he has a super quality and is not fazed by the [biggest] occasions.

"To put him in the team against any opposition... it is just natural for him to be there. For a young player, sometimes they waste a lot of time getting used to the pressure. He looks like he can take it.

"There are very few players like that, players who look like they have always played in the team."

Oxlade-Chamberlain is expected to earn his eighth England Under-21 cap in this evening's game against Belgium at Middlesbrough's Riverside Stadium.

Arsenal have announced they will play Manchester City in a pre-season friendly in the iconic Bird's Nest stadium in Beijing on July 27.

The Gunners had a successful tour to Asia last summer, playing matches in China and Malaysia.

PA

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?
Season's finale brings the end of an era for top coaches and players across the continent

The end of an era across the continent

It's time to say farewell to Klopp, Clement, Casillas and Xavi this weekend as they move on to pastures new, reports Pete Jenson
Bin Laden documents released: Papers reveal his obsession with attacking the US and how his failure to keep up with modern jihad led to Isis

'Focus on killing American people'

Released Bin Laden documents reveal obsession with attacking United States
Life hacks: The innovations of volunteers and medical workers are helping Medécins Sans Frontières save people around the world

Medécins Sans Frontières's life hacks

The innovations of volunteers and medical workers around the world are helping the charity save people
Ireland's same-sex marriage vote: As date looms, the Irish ask - how would God vote?

Same-sex marriage

As date looms, the Irish ask - how would God vote?
The underworld is going freelance: Why The Godfather's Mafia model is no longer viable

The Mafia is going freelance

Why the underworld model depicted in The Godfather is no longer viable