Theo Walcott is raring to go for Arsenal
Arsenal winger Theo Walcott is desperate to kick-start his campaign after a shoulder problem last season robbed him of the best form of his career.
The 20-year-old was injured in November and was sidelined for four months, meaning he could not build on his famous hat-trick for England against Croatia in Zagreb.
After returning to full fitness from that injury, Walcott has since been hampered by a side strain and has not played since the England victories over Kazakhstan and Andorra in June.
"I think my game was going to a new level before I got injured but you always get the odd injury," Walcott told the London Evening Standard. "Hopefully this will be my last one.
"I haven't had much of a pre-season or any games. I've had 45 minutes and that's it - it will take me a few games to get back into the flow but I am raring to go and I am sure it will come."
Walcott took inspiration from Arsenal team-mate Tomas Rosicky, who has just returned after being sidelined since January 2008.
"It is always frustrating when you are injured - you don't want to be sitting on the sidelines watching your team-mates struggle - as we did at times last season," he said.
"The best thing is just to come in all smiles when you have your treatment and work very hard when you are out injured.
"For me, just watching Tomas Rosicky was an inspiration because he was out for 20 months and, by comparison, me being out for a few months is no big deal."
Walcott is keen to fit into the new formation of Gunners manager Arsene Wenger.
"The boss has changed the formation to 4-3-3 and I think that will help us play more attacking football and free me up down that right side," said Walcott.
"I played for Southampton Under-17s in a 4-3-3 formation on the right wing and I really enjoyed it. It gives me the chance to go and attack defenders and I can't wait to get back into the team and show what I can do."
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