Welbeck backs Oxlade-Chamberlain to secure central role

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The England forward believes his club and international colleague is most effective when he is deployed in the middle of the park

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain's best position is central midfield, according to his Arsenal team-mate Danny Welbeck.

The 23-year-old has been used in a variety of roles by Arsene Wenger since joining the Gunners from Southampton in 2011, even finding himself playing at wing-back in the second half of last season.

Oxlade-Chamberlain, who has been linked with a move away from Emirates Stadium, is believed to favour a central role, a preference endorsed by his fellow England international.  

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Asked what his colleague's best position is, Welbeck told Arsenal Player: "With the quality he has and with his ability on the ball… I'd say centre mid.

"I feel like he's got the ability. I like it when he gets the ball in central mid, he knows that I can run in behind and he can play the ball over the top.

"He's got that in his locker and that's something that if we're in training, we look forward to doing… if he stands somebody up in the centre of midfield and goes past them, they're not getting the ball back.

"He's so powerful and quick with the ball. He's got an eye for a pass too, so it's centre of midfield for me."

Amid reports of interest from Liverpool, Oxlade-Chamberlain came second behind Alexis Sanchez as supporters voted for Arsenal's player of the 2016-17 season.

"He's had some solid performances and it's something that doesn't really come as a surprise to me," Welbeck said of Oxlade-Chamberlain's popularity among the fans.

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"I've seen him over the years, I've seen what he can do and what he's capable of. I think now he's started to reap the rewards from it.

"He's putting in some solid performances and he knows that. But he knows in himself that that's got to be the standard, he has to be consistent with that, improve and get to the next level. I'm sure that's what Ox is focusing on doing."

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