It’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s sixth season at Arsenal and neutral observers and fans alike have often stated that the young winger still doesn’t appear to be realising the potential he once promised.
His future at Arsenal has now been plunged into doubt as manager Arsene Wenger stalls on offering him a fresh contract, according to The Independent.
The report suggests that the club were willing to offload the star over the summer but could not find a suitable buyer. It also claimed that Oxlade-Chamberlain has been advised by those close to him that he should leave Arsenal in pursuit of a fresh start.
Many would argue that the 23-year-old winger has not progressed the way Wenger would had hoped.
Although injuries have certainly hampered his progress, there are increasing question marks about his willingness to knuckle down and work on the flaws in his game.
‘The Ox’ joined the Arsenal ranks as a 17-year-old in 2011. He was the second young starlet to make the move from Southampton, following Theo Walcott’s big money move five years earlier.
Over the last five seasons, whether he has quite cut it at north London continues to be debated. He has shown glimpses of greatness at various points every season, but his lack of consistency has been a source of frustration.
Overall, Oxlade-Chamberlain has made 154 League and Cup appearances for the Gunners with 15 goals and 21 assists to his name.
The Portsmouth lad now has a tough task ahead of keeping his place in the side given the competition from Theo Walcott, Lucas Perez, Alex Iwobi and Aaron Ramsey.
There has been no lack of opportunity this season after he got ample time through the pre-season and has started four matches after it. A decent run of performances over the next few games would work to his advantage.
While Oxlade-Chamberlain’s contract doesn’t expire until the end of next season, the current one could be a make or break campaign for him at Arsenal. Where he will be at this time next year is anybody’s guess.