Theo Walcott: 'Wayne Rooney convinced me to join Everton'

Walcott: 'Rooney convinced me to join'
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New Everton winger Theo Walcott reveals that Wayne Rooney convinced him to join the club from Arsenal.

New Everton signing Theo Walcott has revealed that Wayne Rooney was instrumental in convincing him to join the Toffees.

The 28-year-old ended speculation over his future by signing a three-and-a-half-year contract at Goodison Park on Wednesday, bringing an end to his 12-year stay at Arsenal in the process.

Walcott has now revealed that he discussed the switch with Rooney - who himself joined Everton after a long spell with Manchester United last summer - and is confident that it will be a "brilliant" move for him.

"I had numerous chats with Wayne and that was one massive factor which really tempted me to come to Everton. He told me it was a great place to play football and a club that is on the up. Those are the reasons I came here. This is a club with great history. The fans are brilliant, they are always passionate... and I used to find it very tough playing here. You want to be part of something and Wayne feels Everton are really going to improve," he told EvertonTV.

"I was very proud of what I did last season - scoring 19 goals. I want to bring that [scoring form] to Everton Football Club. I want to be part of the attacking force that is here. It always comes down to hard work and I think the manager here will get the best out of all the players. I just want to play football and enjoy it again. I feel this move will make that happen.

"With Sam coming in, his start was fantastic. There has been a little dip - but that happens and it is how you get out of that which makes you stronger. I feel like the players have got a point to prove, I have got a point to prove and it is going to get the best out of us, I am sure.

"I believe I can add value in any of the front-line positions. The manager will pick his team depending on who we play against. He sees me more on the right, but I can play in any of those positions. A lot of those 19 goals I scored I was playing on the right. I think this is going to be brilliant for me. I want to be a part of the atmosphere here and try to build something special. This is a special place to play football and the old traditions are great."

Walcott could make his debut for Everton when they host West Bromwich Albion on Saturday.

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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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