For all the talk of Arsenal bringing in former Gunner star Thierry Henry on loan from the New York Red Bulls when Marouane Chamakh and Gervinho head to the African Nations Cup in January, manager Arsene Wenger says the beginning of the year could be the chance for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
The 18-year-old striker has been frustrated by his lack of first-team opportunities, but Wenger says they will soon come.
“In 2012," the Arsenal manager said, "at the beginning of the year, he will play games. He is not far away. He is a talented boy, it’s all there -- he just needs that toughness in the game because every game for us at the moment is so tight."
Oxlade-Chamberlain's only EPL appearance came in an 8-2 loss to Manchester United, and Wenger admits he may have set the young signing from Southampton back by bringing him on.
“On the day," said Wenger, "it was not a favor for anybody to come on. The team was completely lost and it was not the best of favors I’ve done."