Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has admitted he might have to reconsider his Arsenal future in a bid to play first-team football.
The England international has failed to play more than 30 games in the Premier League in any of his five full seasons at the Emirates. While he has featured six times in the league this season, half of those appearances have come from the bench.
Oxlade-Chamberlain was linked with a move to other Premier League sides in the summer, but decided to stay with Arsenal. However, he revealed that he would have to evaluate his situation at the club next summer and consider a switch elsewhere.
Speaking on Goals on Sunday, he said:
‘I’d be lying if I wasn’t going to sit here and say that it has crossed my mind that I need more game time. As a footballer, you want to play every game. Me being myself, I’m not happy when I’m not playing.
‘There is going to come a time in my career, and I think I’m approaching that, when I do need to be getting more regular football, but my focus completely and utterly now is on playing for Arsenal and still trying to break into the team when I get the opportunity. Help out if I have to come off the bench, do what I did yesterday and come on and make a difference.
‘My sole aim for now is to help Arsenal and keep pushing myself to play in this team, because you know, I love playing at Arsenal. It’s a great club, it’s a great team and I’ve got a lot of faith in the team.
‘There is that in my mind that I do want to get more game time. There comes a time in your career where you have to re-evaluate things and think, “Is that going to be here or elsewhere?”.
‘I’m not there at the moment, I’m fully focused on this season, playing my part in that. When you get to the end of the season, just like managers do where they re-evaluate their team, players re-evaluate their personal situation, and I’ll do that at the end of the season’.
The winger was full of praise for Arsene Wenger, but admitted he occasionally pushes the manager to give him more opportunities on the field.
‘He’s a man of few words at times, so you have to guess what he’s thinking,’ Oxlade-Chamberlain continued. ‘He says enough to keep you going and keep you motivated.
‘I know what he’s like, and I know what’s required. He doesn’t have to say much to me, I know what’s going on. The way, at the moment, that the team’s been playing, especially since the Chelsea game at home, it gives everyone the vibes of what’s expected and what needs to happen and that pushes you on.
‘The manager does inspire everyone with what he says and he does try his hardest to keep everyone in it together. I’m fully into what we’re trying to achieve this season.
‘As I’ve got older, in the last year or so, yeah I’ve gone and knocked on his door and had words with him, because I’m at a stage now where I definitely want to be playing and pushing him to play me, getting feedback and if I’m not playing, finding out why I’m not playing. Or if I am playing, what he is happy with or what he is not happy with.’