By ESPNSTAR.com staff
The Emirates Stadium has undergone much change this summer, with the likes of van Persie and Alex Song leaving for new pastures and the arrivals of Lukas Podolski, Olivier Giroud and Santi Cazorla.
Walcott nearly joined his former captain on the departures list when he turned down a contract extension days before the closing of the transfer window. Fortunately for Arsenal supporters, the winger sorted out a short-term agreement with manager Arsene Wenger and remained a Gunner.
Writing in his column for the Sun, Redknapp believes Walcott's decision to stay with his current employers could work out fantastically for both player and club.
"Agreeing to stay put at Arsenal for the time being could turn out to be the best decision he will make for a long time. I gave Theo his debut as a kid at Southampton. I've watched him develop at Arsenal under Arsene Wenger but there is so much more to come from him. And nowhere will he get a better chance to fulfil that potential than where he is right now," he stated.
"He can become a big, big fish at Arsenal. There are so many opportunities open to him now, especially with the departure of Robin van Persie."
Although Wenger will likely count on Podolski and Giroud to supply the goals van Persie used to, Redknapp urged the French manager to give Walcott a go upfront.
"Rather than lament the sale of the captain as another nail in Arsenal's coffin, Theo should seize the chance to replace him. Theo's first game for me was playing as a centre-forward against Leeds. He ran them ragged through the middle," he revealed.
"Central defenders simply cannot handle his pace, his quick turns and lightning reactions, the way full-backs are perhaps better equipped to do so. He is scary when he runs straight down a centre-half's throat."
Should the club fail to tie down the 23-year old with a new contract before the start of the next transfer window, Walcott's future will be heavily speculated once more, but the former Portsmouth manager advised the young winger to keep the faith and follow his heart.
"My advice to young Theo would be to stay exactly where he is and continue to learn from Arsene Wenger. I get the impression that in his heart of hearts that's what he really wants to do anyway. It would be a really bad move to go up to Manchester City and take his chance alongside the likes of Sergio Aguero, Carlos Tevez and David Silva," Redknapp noted.
"Maybe it is a risk for Wenger to buy time with Theo in the final year of his contract. After all, if things don't work out he could walk for nothing next summer and command whatever wages he wants because he would still be a cheap signing. Not everyone has got Manchester City's money. But then again not everyone has got Arsenal's pedigree and tradition."
Arsenal welcome Southampton for their next Premier League fixture.