Danny Welbeck is often the centre of ridicule for many fans who don’t support one of the few teams he has played for.
For Arsenal fans, he has been an injury prone liability who cannot find consistency. For Manchester United fans, he was the local lad who never quite managed to make the cut. But for England, Welbeck often finds that extra level of form which has seen him get 14 goals in 33 appearances.
With his return to football coming in the shape of a dramatic injury time winner against title rivals Leicester City at the weekend, could Welbeck be the secret to success for Arsenal’s 13 year wait for Premier League glory, as well as England’s hopes of success in the summer.
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This season Arsenal have relied solely on the talent of Mesut Ozil to set up Olivier Giroud, but they have no other strike options, unless they put Alexis Sanchez or Theo Walcott upfront.
Welbeck creates another choice for Wenger to utilise. If Welbeck starts, he can play off Giroud and help provide the goals. However, you can guarantee he’ll more than likely be the substitute striker, and will be relied upon to score off the bench.
Wenger, though, has a knack of playing Welbeck out of position. The Arsenal boss often plays Welbeck either as a lone striker, where he struggles for goal scoring opportunities, or on the left wing. Even though the England international does have the ability to cut in off the flank, more often or not he is wasteful in front of goal.
Giroud has done so well this season and Arsenal are fighting for Premier League honours, but the return of Welbeck still couldn’t have come at a better time. There have been a few times when the Gunners have struggled for goals, and hopefully in the business end of the season Welbeck can contribute.
For England, it will be a lot harder for Welbeck to force his way in to Roy Hodgson’s plans. Since his injury, Harry Kane, Saido Berahino, Danny Ings, Jamie Vardy and Charlie Austin have all been called up for the national squad, as well as Daniel Sturridge and Wayne Rooney.
Out of all of those strikers, you would feel that Sturridge, Rooney and Kane will be definitely in the squad that travels to France. If Sturridge stays fit and scores goals, he will most probably start alongside Rooney. Kane, too, if he continues to score and fires Spurs to glory before the end of the season, it will be hard to see Welbeck getting called up.
For the Arsenal striker to be considered, he will need to be consistent and score regularly for Arsenal between now and May. For a player that isn’t a consistent goal scorer, it will be very hard for him to be included.