Do England still have the need for speed now this Arsenal ace is absent?

Entering this summer’s World Cup fully healthy has proven difficult for many of the top squads around the world, and England is no different.

After Arsenal winger Theo Walcott tore his left ACL in a January Premier League match with Tottenham, the prognosis came back that the 24-year-old would miss the World Cup.

Many felt that this would be a problem for the Three Lions, as Walcott’s pace on the right side is second to almost no one that England can throw onto the pitch.

As it turned out, however, England has been able to bring on several young players in Walcott’s absence whom they hope can replicate what they lost when he was ruled out of contention.

“Arsenal missed (Walcott’s pace) immensely- you’ve got to have pace in a team,” Sky Sports’ Paul Merson said in a recent interview. “But we have Sturridge, Welbeck, Sterling all who have pace, Barkley is as good as anybody probably in world football at running with the ball, you know he’s up there with (Cristiano) Ronaldo.

“So we’ve got pace within the team, but Theo will be missed there’s no question about it.

“He’s a top player for England, he’s proved it for them already, so he will be missed, but I think they can get by without him.”

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