Theo Walcott has left Arsenal after spending over a decade at the club, joining Everton in a deal worth £20 million.
Walcott, 28, is Everton’s second major addition of the January transfer window, following striker Cenk Tosun’s £25m move to Goodison Park.
The attacking midfielder and wannabe striker has signed a three-and-a-half-year deal, keeping him at the club until June 2021.
“I’m very ambitious and I’ve come here because I want the club to push to the next level,” Walcott said in a statement on the official Everton website. “And with the players that have come in, I feel like the next level can be reached.
“I’m very excited to be starting a new chapter and I felt this was the right place for me to be. The manager is very ambitious and I feel like the Club is going in the right direction.”
Walcott burst on to the scene in 2006 when he was called up to the England World Cup squad by Sven-Goran Eriksson despite having not made a single appearance for Arsenal following his transfer from Southampton.
The winger did not feature for England in that tournament, but is just three caps shy of 50 for England and has gone on to play 270 times for Arsenal in a spell that has seen him win the FA Cup twice.
And Walcott posted a heartfelt message to the Arsenal supporters on his social media accounts as the news of his transfer broke.
“I would like to say a big thank you to everyone involved at Arsenal – manager, coaches, backroom staff, and all the many people at the club that have been part of my family for the past 12 years,” Walcott said.
“I would also like to thank all my team mates I have had the pleasure of playing alongside, but most importantly the fans for their incredible support. I feel sad to leave but also excited for a new challenge. I wish everyone at the club every success for the future.”
Walcott’s first game for Everton could come against West Bromwich Albion on Saturday, while a reunion with Arsenal is just over a fortnight away, with the Toffees set to visit the Emirates on Saturday 3 February.
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