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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Nov, 7, 2007

Walcott tipped to savage Slavia once again

Emmanuel Adebayor is backing team-mate Theo Walcott to give Slavia Prague the run-around again as Arsenal look to secure their place in the last 16 of the Champions League.

Walcott, 18, marked his first start in Europe's premier club competition with two goals in an impressive display from a more central attacking role as the Czechs were crushed 7-0 at Emirates Stadium a fortnight ago.

The England Under-21 international is expected to feature again at the Evzena Rosickeho Stadium tonight, where Wenger will rotate his side.

Former Southampton trainee Walcott was a controversial selection in Sven-Goran Eriksson's ill-fated World Cup squad last summer after his big-money move to Arsenal.

Walcott has, though, made rapid progress this season and is now fully recovered from a shoulder problem which needed surgery over the summer.

Adebayor is not surprised - and believes there is plenty more to come from the exciting teenager.

'We all know that Theo is a good player, and we all trust him as well,' said the Togo striker, who may be rested on the bench tonight. 'The way he plays, at times it is unbelievable because he is running from everywhere.

'Theo is very quick and uses his pace very well. Hopefully he can do that again. He is a player who has got everything. He is still young and is still learning, but for sure he can do something good again when we play Slavia.'

Wenger is more than happy with the progress of the attack-minded youngster.

'Theo is doing well at the moment, like against Sheffield United in the Carling Cup as well as the first game against Slavia Prague,' the Arsenal manager said.

'I give him the experience as much as I can, but as well he is very close to the team. It is another good opportunity for him.'

Wenger elected to rest both 11-goal midfielder Cesc Fabregas and Alexander Hleb for the trip to the Czech Republic, while defender Kolo Toure (calf) and Tomas Rosicky (groin) also missed out because of injury.

Wenger maintained he had no concerns over his selection policy as Arsenal look to extend their unbeaten run to 26 consecutive matches, with a draw enough to send the Group H leaders into the knock-out stages.

'I said before the game against Manchester United that I would rotate a bit more because we come into a period where it is needed,' he insisted.

'We have a way to play the game and have 20 players who are very good, so it does not really matter. When the players need a breather, I will give them one.'

Wenger added: 'We want to finish the job we have started. We have nine points, but we know that it is not enough to qualify.

'We will be up for it and we have enough experience in the Champions League to know all the teams push to the limit.

'If we just think tomorrow we turn up and think 'Well, we won the first game easily' then we will have a bad surprise.'

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