Sam Allardyce thrilled to land Theo Walcott
The England forward has left Arsenal after 12 years to join Everton
Sam Allardyce believes new Everton signing Theo Walcott will bring “excitement” to Goodison Park.
England forward Walcott, 28, completed his switch from Arsenal to the Toffees on a three-and-a-half-year contract on Wednesday evening.
The fee is undisclosed but Allardyce’s second signing of the January transfer window reportedly cost £20million.
Allardyce said he should have been more “boring” with his team selection after watching Everton get thumped 4-0 by Tottenham on Saturday.
But the Toffees boss could not hide his delight at beating off competition from Walcott’s former club Southampton to land his man.
“I am thrilled,” Allardyce told evertontv. “There was a bit of a chase between a couple of clubs but I think after we set out the ambitions of the club and my ambitions for him he was motivated to come here and refreshed in his mind by the new challenge he can put upon himself.
“He is at a prime age. The prime age of a professional footballer is between 25, 26 and 30, 31. That is when they appear, by all research today, to be at the peak of their careers.
“We have not got too many players in that age bracket in the squad, so he adds one to that. He has a lot of experience and will hopefully provide a lot of excitement for the Everton fans and for us, in terms of getting results, assists and scoring goals.”
Walcott, a double FA Cup winner with Arsenal, says he made the switch in a bid to win more trophies.
I would like to say a big thank you to everyone involved @Arsenal – manager, coaches, backroom staff, and all the many people at the club that have been part of my family for the past 12 years. 1/2— Theo Walcott (@theowalcott) January 17, 2018
“I’ve come to Everton because I want the club to push to the next level,” he told the club’s website.
“I’m very excited to be starting a new chapter and I felt this was the right place for me to be. The manager is very ambitious and I feel like the club is going in the right direction.
“The club has won trophies but I want them to win trophies now.”
The move brings to an end Walcott’s 12-year spell at Arsenal, for whom he scored 108 goals in 397 appearances.
2/2 I would also like to thank all my team mates I have had the pleasure of playing alongside, but most importantly the fans for their incredible support. I feel sad to leave but also excited for a new challenge. I wish everyone at the club every success for the future.— Theo Walcott (@theowalcott) January 17, 2018
Walcott revealed he was talked into swapping Arsenal for Everton by former England team-mate Wayne Rooney.
“I had numerous chats with Wayne and that was one massive factor which really tempted me to come to Everton,” Walcott told evertontv. “He told me it was a great place to play football and a club that is on the up. Those are the reasons I came here.
“This is a club with great history. The fans are brilliant, they are always passionate… and I used to find it very tough playing here.
“You want to be part of something and Wayne feels Everton are really going to improve.”