For one, most Arsenal players are on big wages and, supposedly, Podolski is on £100,000 a week so why isn't that a problem already if what you suggest is true about giving Walcott an improved contract causing problems in the squad with other players?
Plus, I don't think Walcott is seeking a massive contract, he claims it's not about money. I expect it is to some extent, but I think it's a case of giving him an extra £10,000 or £20,000 a week, so it's hardly a massive increase that's hardly going to cause uproar.
If we offer Walcott a new deal worth £100,000 a week or something, then a few players might feel deserving of a new deal but I don't see that as being a big problem. It must surely be a problem already when you think about what players like Djourou, Chamakh, Arshavin and co. are on already. A bigger problem would be losing another one of our best players.
The priority must be to keep your best players. Otherwise what's the point? We're not going to move forward if we don't move with the times and keep our best players by offering them bigger wages than we might have done 10 or 15 years ago. If we don't keep our best players then we're just going to keep moving backwards like we are at the moment.
It sends out the wrong message to our other players- if we sell Walcott, do you think the likes of Cazorla, Szczesny, Vermaelen, Wilshere and Sagna are going to be happy and want to stay? They're going to be disillusioned, they're going to think 'oh no, another one of our best players leaving again, maybe I should join a club that has genuine ambitions to win things and doesn't sell it's best players'. It sends out the wrong message to us fans, it would only increase the feeling of doom and gloom around the club, it sends out the wrong message to players from other clubs, we'll be a lot less attractive if we keep selling our top players, even players like Raheem Sterling probably wouldn't want to join us. Who wants to join a club that sells it's best players season in, season out and doesn't win anything?
Not only that, losing Walcott would deplete our chances of finishing in the top four this season and can you really expect Arsenal to challenge for the major trophies over the next few years as we keep selling our best players? The more it happens, the harder it is to stop it from continuing. It started with Nasri, Fabregas and Clichy and it's progressed to Van Persie, Song and possibly now Walcott. Who next? Cazorla? Vermaelen? Sagna?
So to sum up, selling Walcott would decrease our chances of finishing in the top four, progressing in the Champions League this season, challenging for trophies in the near future at least and would put in jeopardy our chances of attracting good players to the club and keeping our other better players. We don't want to be a selling club, we want to be a club that keeps it's best players and challenges for trophies, not bragging about a healthy bank balance as we drift further and further away from success and trophies.
How anyone can suggest Arsenal letting Walcott go is not a big deal is beyond me. It would be catastrophic. It's also even more evidence of poor management by Wenger and the board as we have let another player get down to the last year of his contract. Do you ever wonder why Arsenal do this and the likes of Man Utd, Man City, Chelsea, Tottenham and Everton never do?
Giving Walcott a little extra cash is a small price to pay for stopping this team declining even more and giving us at least a decent chance of making the top four this season. I'd rather lose a bit more money on contracts to our best players than losing a lot more money on not qualifying for the Champions League, and Theo Walcott could have a big say in that.
If Walcott goes:
- We lose another one of our best players
- It will probably cause discontent in the squad- players unhappy at another top player leaving the club
- We'll become a less attractive team for others players to join
- We'll have slimmer chances of finishing in the top four (this season and/ or next)
- It spreads more gloom around the club and the fans
- It increases the chances of our other better players leaving us in the near future
(Image source: http://img.thesun.co.uk/multimedia/archive/01445/TheoWalcott_1445236a.jpg Accessed 16th December 2012)