Everton attacker Theo Walcott has admitted that he fell out of love with football towards the end of his time as an Arsenal player.
Walcott was heralded as one of the best young talents in Europe when Arsene Wenger signed him as a 17-year-old from Southampton, and he was even included in England’s 2006 World Cup squad despite having never played a Premier League game.
Although Walcott scored over 100 goals for Arsenal, he never really fulfilled his early potential and he left the North London club last January to join Everton after falling down the pecking order under Arsene Wenger.
The 29-year-old winger is set to return to the Emirates this weekend with Everton and he has opened up about how unhappy he became towards the end of his time as an Arsenal player.
“I’m not going to lie, I fell out of love with football for a little bit. Because I had some good performances, but then just didn’t get the chance to play on,” Walcott told Sky Sports.
“Scoring over 100 goals for Arsenal is a great achievement for me personally, and then just the last year-and-a-half was tough, I can’t lie. It was really tough, not being able to get into the team, being in and out.
“I just felt I wanted to get the excitement of football again. I didn’t feel like it was going to be at Arsenal then.
Sam at the time got in contact, and I felt “yeah, this is the right move for me”.
“I got the buzz and enjoyment back, and I couldn’t be in a happier place to be honest, I’m playing football with a smile on my face. I just love football again.”