Wenger hails Walcott after derby double

Mon, 27 Feb 07:56:32 2012

Arsene Wenger is proud of the way Theo Walcott recovered from a poor start to lead Arsenal to an incredible north London derby victory.

The England international endured a frustrating opening period against Tottenham, who racked up a two-goal lead by the 34th minute thanks to goals from Louis Saha and Emmanuel Adebayor.

Bacary Sagna and Robin van Persie pegged Spurs back before half-time, although calls remained for Walcott to be replaced at the break.

However, the winger followed up a Tomas Rosicky effort with a second-half brace to complete a resounding 5-2 victory at the Emirates Stadium.

"The crowd were starting to get on his back and you wonder if you're doing him a favour if you leave him on," Arsenal boss Wenger said of Walcott.

"Considering the rest of the team were high on confidence, I felt that he has the qualities that we needed - a player who can be direct, go behind the defenders. Nobody else is like that."


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