Arsene Wenger "very attached" to outgoing Theo Walcott

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Arsene Wenger is sad to see Theo Walcott leave Arsenal after 12 years at the club, but says that it was only fair the England international was granted a move away.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has admitted that he 'regrets' letting Theo Walcott join Everton in a £20m deal as he is "very attached" to the England international.

Walcott ended his mixed 12-year spell in North London on Wednesday afternoon by linking up with Sam Allardyce at Goodison Park.

Wenger has paid tribute to the departing attacker, who he insists can leave with his head held high following some happy times at Arsenal over the past decade.

"My memories go for over 12 years," he told reporters at his weekly press conference. "Personally, I'm very attached to Theo because he's intelligent, has complete integrity. I remember he arrived at the age of 16 and went to the World Cup straight away.

"He scored important goals in big games, you talk about FA Cup finals, Champions League games, local derbies. I regret what happened but he didn't play enough recently. I wish him well and thank him for everything he's done for us. He's always welcome here."

Walcott admitted to being "sad" after calling time on his Arsenal career, which saw him net 108 goals in 297 appearances.

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New Everton boss Sam Allardyce is presented to the crowd ahead of the match with Huddersfield Town on December 2, 2017
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