Walcott: ‘We’re best in Europe’

The third-placed Gunners have been in great form in the Premier League since the turn of the year, although their charge stalled a little on Sunday, when they were held 0-0 at home by leaders Chelsea.

That result left them 10 points behind and very unlikely to overhaul the Blues but Walcott thinks the strength in depth in the squad means a title challenge next season could be on the cards.

Walcott himself last started back in March and his fellow England internationals Danny Welbeck, Jack Wilshere and Kieran Gibbs also failed to make the starting XI for the vital clash with Chelsea.

Quoted on Arsenal???s website, Walcott said: ???There is a lot of competition for places, so everyone seems to lift a gear and play extremely well. It makes it a bit more difficult for people to get into the team.

“I think, especially this season, not many people thought we would be challenging for the Premier League.

“In this calendar year, we have been the best team in Europe. It is the strongest the squad has been and everyone is staying fit as well.

“There aren’t many injuries in the squad, which is important. If we had an injury-free season, I think we could lift the title.”

Walcott joined Arsenal back in January 2006 and so he is closing in on 10 years with the London club.

???I’ve grown from being a little babyface to a man, he said.

“From when I joined the club to now, it’s completely changed. The likes of Freddie Ljungberg, Robert Pires, Thierry Henry, Sol Campbell and so on were there and had won the league before, going undefeated. Coming into that squad was a big achievement.”