19 Jan, 21:00
Everton forward Theo Walcott has said he cannot thank ex-boss Arsene Wenger enough for the belief shown in him but felt the time was right to leave Arsenal.
The England international completed his £20m move to Everton on Wednesday after 12 years with the Gunners, where he scored 108 goals in 297 appearances. Despite scoring 19 goals last season, the 28-year-old was unable to command a regular starting spot with Arsenal this campaign but holds no grudges against Wenger.
“ I've always had so much respect for him. With any player, if you're not playing you're going to be upset, but you need to try and dig deep and get into that position. For whatever reason, it didn't happen this year. That's why I've moved on. I've known [Wenger] since I was 16. To bring a young player in and to have belief in him, I can't thank him enough for that, Walcott said.
The 28-year-old is happy to link up with Wayne Rooney, whom he once played alongside in Allardyce’s only game in charge of England, adding he was impressed by the former Manchester United forward’s desire to succeed at Everton.