Walcott reveals relief after Arsenal contract agreement

Theo Walcott has admitted he is relieved to have finally put pen to paper on his new Arsenal contract, ESPN has reported.

The player and the club appeared to be drifting apart as Walcott entered the last six months of his existing deal with the Gunners, sparking rumours of a move away from Arsenal – potentially to either Manchester United or Liverpool, most likely at the end of the season when Walcott could have left the Emirates Stadium on a free transfer.

Manager Arsene Wenger had however been predicting Walcott would sign long before he actually did, but the England international revealed the contract was essentially agreed weeks ago, and while his signature had become something of a formality, it was still playing on his mind.

Walcott said: “For the last three games before [the Chelsea match] it was sort of done, but it was on my mind and had been for a long time because it was so close. It is difficult to play and block out that side of it, but I tried to do the best I could and hopefully everyone was happy with what I did.

The 23-year-old has been at Arsenal since a January 2006 move from Southampton, going on to play almost 250 times for the club, scoring 57 goals. This season, Walcott has featured 26 times for Wenger’s side and has 15 goals to his name, his highest tally for a season, with still half of the campaign to play.

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