Former Everton striker Marcus Bent has exclusively told Football FanCast that he expects Theo Walcott to join Southampton permanently this summer.
Following a disappointing two-and-a-half seasons at Goodison Park, the former Arsenal man was loaned back to his boyhood club last summer, 14 years after his departure.
And Walcott has found his form once again on the south Coast, scoring twice and laying on three assists in 19 Premier League appearances.
One of those two goals came on his return to the Emirates in the 1-1 draw back in December, although a hamstring problem sustained in January has threatened to stall the £100,ooo per-week winger’s momentum, forcing him to miss nine games.
However, the ex-England international has recovered from that injury to feature in four of the Saints’ previous five matches.
Walcott’s loan deal runs out at the end of the season, but so does his Toffees contract, meaning he’ll be available on a free transfer should Everton decide against offering him fresh terms.
And Bent told Football FanCast that he thinks Walcott will end up back at St Mary’s:
“I spoke to the club. He got to Everton from Arsenal and didn’t do too much.
“He’s a good player, you can see it by him going back to Southampton. He’s on fire, he’s got that spark again.
“I think Southampton is his nearest and dearest thing to his heart at the minute. He’s from there, he knows the club inside out, so I think he will stay with Southampton.”