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Jan 4, 2012

Walcott urges Gunners to assist RVP

Theo Walcott feels the Arsenal camp is a more unified place to be this campaign but has urged his team-mates to help take the goalscoring burden of striker Robin van Persie.

• Blog: Can we go back to 2011?

The Gunners are currently fifth in the Premier League table after recovering from a poor start to the campaign, which followed the departures of key pair Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri.

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger reacted late in the transfer window, signing the likes of experienced defender Per Mertesacker and former Everton midfielder Mikel Arteta.

Walcott has hailed the unity amongst the squad, but is wary of the onus placed on forward Van Persie, who has netted 17 of the club's 36 league goals this season.

The 22-year-old told Arsenal Player: "I'm not saying that Cesc and Samir were individual players, they were great team players, but when you lose two top players everyone needs to come together.

"The manager has brought in some good additions and we are a bit more of a team, we work harder when we haven't got the ball.

"We have a lot more clean sheets as well, and having [Thomas] Vermaelen back is very important as he is a massive player for us.

"The next thing the whole team needs to share the goals more. Samir and Cesc used to get quite a lot of them and Robin van Persie has been getting most of them so that's our next step."

He continued: "I need to get in among the goals a bit more maybe - I only have four. But I'm happy if the team's winning and I'm getting assists for the main man up front. I'm doing my job and you have to be effective going forward. That's what I've been doing so far.

"It's been a long time since we won something and for me personally, I want to win even more now as well.

"Fingers crossed we can all stay fit, which is quite important. In seasons before we've had a lot of injuries that have stuttered us slightly and that doesn't help the team. But it's a squad thing, and the important thing is that we keep a lot of players fit."


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