It’s been a difficult season for Theo Walcott, who has been limited to just 28 minutes of game time in the Premier League despite Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil missing chunks of the campaign through injury.
But the 47-cap England international was given the chance to impress last night in Europa League action and took it firmly with both hands – reminding Arsene Wenger of exactly what he has to offer the Gunners throughout 2017/18.
An explosive start in Belarus saw Walcott net twice in the space of 22 minutes, first getting on the end of a superb cross from Jack Wilshere and then benefiting from goalkeeper Denis Scherbitski’s shockingly loose pass.
But the two goals alone don’t quite do the 28-year-old’s performance justice. For starters, he could’ve easily grabbed a hat-trick having produced another five efforts at goal – including another two on target and one that clipped the woodwork.
Alongside that, Walcott was a relentless menace for the BATE defence, something highlighted by his three created chances, four successful dribbles, five accurate crosses and passing accuracy of 89%.
It remains to be seen just what role Walcott will play for Arsenal this season but judging by his performance last night, the often mercurial winger is more than ready to contribute.