No Prospect Of Everton Loan
Everton boss Sam Allardyce has confirmed the club are interested in Arsenal forward Theo Walcott. However, the England international will only move to Goodison Park on a permanent deal as Arsenal have already ruled out a loan.
“I think you’re all aware of our interest in Theo,” Allardyce said at a press conference on Friday. “If that’s possible to get over the line then I’d be delighted, but there’s negotiations that are happening at the moment. If that can be all sorted out, which is the most difficult thing to do today, then that would be a great addition in my opinion to come and join us in an attacking sense.”
Allardyce was asked why he was keen on signing Walcott.
“For two or three reasons, really: goalscoring threat, pace, experience and he is good on assists from wide areas in terms of his crossing ability. So I think if that’s at all possible then that would be very nice, but it’s not imminent at the moment – some negotiations are going on.
“It’s a permanent deal we’re hoping to negotiate, I don’t think there’s any chance of a loan.”
Allardyce was then asked if he is optimistic about getting the deal done.
“I don’t get optimistic, otherwise I get disappointed!” he replied.
“We will wait and see. I’ll be very excited and enthused once somebody – if it’s not Theo then somebody else – has actually signed on the dotted line.
“In this window or in any window, you don’t get too optimistic because so many things can happen in such a short space of time.”
Allardyce admitted that Walcott is his only target at the moment but that he offers less of a risk than Everton’s other January signing to date, Turkish striker Cenk Tosun.
“He’s the only target at the moment. It’s called ‘one at a time’!
“Theo is not as risky, because he’s proven. He’s scored 100 goals for Arsenal from wide positions, as well as many assists. His pace is one of his key strengths, and is what we lack in this squad. His assists and goals are pretty good, and we are short of goals. To add power in our goalscoring ability would be very important, if we can negotiate that transfer. And he’s only 28.”
Walcott has spent over ten years at Arsenal having moved to the Emirates from Southampton. But Allardyce has no issues about the prospect of Walcott leaving London.
“I wouldn’t have thought a player today would have any qualms about where he’d move, if it improves his career I wouldn’t have thought they’d have a mentality about ‘that’s not the right place to go’.
“If it’s about first-team football then it’s ‘have boots will travel’ isn’t it? Foreign players move all over the world now, so one of our British players moving up the road shouldn’t be a problem!”
Any transfer is likely to be in the region of £20million.