Arsenal style inspired Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has revealed how years of watching Arsenal on television helped him secure his £15million move to the Emirates Stadium.

Oxlade-Chamberlain, who had long been linked with the Gunners, finally completed his transfer from Southampton yesterday.

And the attacking midfielder, who turns 18 on Monday, explained after signing his long-term contract how years of studying the way Arsenal play under Arsene Wenger influenced his own game.

"I've never really been a mad fan of anyone but Arsenal definitely were one of the teams I've always followed," he told Arsenal TV Online.

"I think that's the best way to learn to play football, watching the boys play at Arsenal."

No player inspired Oxlade-Chamberlain more than his new club's all-time top scorer, Thierry Henry.

"As I was growing up, he was always star man on Match of the Day," Oxlade-Chamberlain said of the former Arsenal captain.

"All the highlights were basically of him because he was always scoring, week in, week out.

"The goals he scored were fantastic and the play he created around him with the rest of the players, it was just exciting to watch."

The man currently in possession of Henry's old number 14 jersey has proven just as much of an inspiration to the Gunners new boy.

Oxlade-Chamberlain's career is almost a mirror image of that of Theo Walcott, who has established himself with Arsenal and England since his £12million move four and a half years ago.

Oxlade-Chamberlain said: "The way I saw Theo when he left Southampton and took off here, it's been really encouraging for me. He's a great player.

"To go on like he has to play for England and score goals for England, and do as well as he has for Arsenal, it definitely gave me confidence and maybe helped my decision a bit more."

As did manager Wenger's reputation for blooding youngsters.

"That was one of the reasons why I wanted to come to Arsenal, because I really believe that he knows what he's doing," Oxlade-Chamberlain added.

"I think he knows what to do to develop me in the best way."

Oxlade-Chamberlain admitted he owed Southampton "massively", having been there since the age of seven, adding: "They've brought me up into the player I am today."

And he insisted he had joined Arsenal "to win things", saying: "I want to come here and win as much as I can.

"The club's got the talent here and the ability to do that."

That has been the case for the past six seasons but Arsenal have repeatedly come up short, most notably last season, when they were in the hunt for a quadruple but collapsed in every single competition.

Oxlade-Chamberlain said: "I can't really explain what was wrong or what wasn't wrong.

"The way I saw it, they played fantastic football and the infrastructure of the club and everything here is spot-on.

"It's just waiting to happen, I think."

Those sentiments were echoed last night by new majority shareholder Stan Kroenke, who sent a message to members of the Arsenal Independent Supporters' Association, which was relayed at their AGM.

Gunners chief executive Ivan Gazidis spent 45 minutes answering questions from AISA yesterday but it was from American billionaire Kroenke that they really wanted to hear.

He said in his message: "The Arsenal Independent Supporters' Association represents a large number of fans so your views are important to me.

"I know Ivan works hard to ensure we have a good ongoing relationship and I've asked for that to continue.

"I also share your desire for us to be successful on the pitch. This has been my goal for all my sports associations.

"I'm confident we'll have another terrific season ahead.

"I look forward to working with you as the season unfolds and thank you very much for your on going support."

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

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

A groundbreaking study of 'Britain's Atlantis' long buried at the bottom of the North Sea could revolutionise how we see our prehistoric past

Britain's Atlantis

Scientific study beneath North Sea could revolutionise how we see the past
The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember,' says Starkey

The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember'

David Starkey's assessment
Oliver Sacks said his life has been 'an enormous privilege and adventure'

'An enormous privilege and adventure'

Oliver Sacks writing about his life
'Gibraltar is British, and it is going to stay British forever'

'Gibraltar is British, and it is going to stay British forever'

The Rock's Chief Minister hits back at Spanish government's 'lies'
Britain is still addicted to 'dirty coal'

Britain still addicted to 'dirty' coal

Biggest energy suppliers are more dependent on fossil fuel than a decade ago
Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition

Orthorexia nervosa

How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Lady Chatterley is not obscene, says TV director

Lady Chatterley’s Lover

Director Jed Mercurio on why DH Lawrence's novel 'is not an obscene story'
Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests

Set a pest to catch a pest

Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests
Mexico: A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life

The dark side of Mexico

A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life
Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde. Don't tell other victims it was theirs

Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde

Please don't tell other victims it was theirs
A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935