FA Cup wins must fuel title challenge, says Walcott


Football - Arsenal v Aston Villa - FA Cup Final - Wembley Stadium - 30/5/15 Arsenal's Olivier Giroud and Theo Walcott celebrate with the trophy after winning the FA Cup Final as team mates and Duke of Cambridge, Prince William look on Reuters / Eddie Keogh

LONDON (Reuters) - Arsenal must not rest on their laurels after successive FA Cup victories and instead use one of the side's "best squads" to inspire them to Premier League glory next season, according to forward Theo Walcott.

The England international scored the opening goal in Arsenal's 4-0 thrashing of Aston Villa at Wembley on Saturday as the Gunners retained the trophy they won against Hull City the previous season.

In the Premier League, however, Arsenal, who have not won the title since 2004, were never a factor in the title race and finished 12 points behind champions Chelsea in third place.

The Gunners were languishing in sixth place at the turn of the year but finished the season in blistering form and registered impressive away wins against Manchester City and Manchester United in the league and cup respectively.

Those victories fuelled talk that the Gunners had finally added substance to their style and Walcott said the north London side would set their ambitions high next season.

"The Premier League has to be the next target for us," the 26-year-old, who scored a hat-trick in their final league match against West Bromwich Albion last week, told the BBC.

"That's two FA Cup wins now but this is one of the best squads we have had at Arsenal so we should be achieving more. We need to start well in the Premier League next year.

"This team is blessed and there's got to be many more next year."

Walcott's campaign has been disrupted by injury but he has finished the season strongly and he is just one of a plethora of attacking options available to manager Arsene Wenger.

Frenchman Wenger also boasts sparkling attacking players such as Alexis Sanchez, who scored a sublime second at Wembley, Mesut Ozil, Aaron Ramsey and Santi Cazorla.

Combined with an improved steeliness in midfield in the shape of Francis Coquelin and a defence which was only bettered by champions Chelsea and Southampton, talk has increased that the jigsaw maybe slowly falling into place at the Emirates Stadium.

"If we keep this squad, with one or two more players, we will have a good chance to challenge for the title," French forward Olivier Giroud, who scored Arsenal's fourth goal on Saturday, told the BBC.

"The Premier League title is the target. Hopefully we will be there."

(Reporting By Tom Hayward; Editing by John O'Brien)

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 1
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
   

Did you find this article insightful?

Yes
No

Next In Football

Wolves' Traore uses baby oil to blaze past defenders - Nuno
Stroppa sacked by Crotone with club bottom of Serie A standings
League title remains the target for Juventus, says Pirlo
Tottenham's Europa last-16 games with Dinamo Zagreb reversed
Member of Juve first-team staff tests positive for COVID-19
Bayern, not Manchester City, are best club in Europe - Guardiola
Judo-CAS annuls indefinite suspension of Iran from international judo
Japan, Argentina under-24s set to play friendlies in Japan
Sport advisory firm Tifosy hires former Inter Milan executive
Stephan resigns as Rennes manager after dismal run

Stories You'll Enjoy


Vouchers