Wenger backing Oxlade-Chamberlain

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

First published in Premier League and National Sports News © by

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is convinced rising star Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will make England's Euro 2012 squad if he continues his current impressive form.

Despite being just 18 years old, Oxlade-Chamberlain has made a big impression since he joined the north London club last summer from Southampton.

"You cannot take him out of the team, you have to keep him there," Wenger said on Arsenal's website. "Until the end of the season there is no problem and if he continues to play like this I am convinced he will go to Euro 2012."

Wenger had intended to integrate Oxlade-Chamberlain slowly in to the Gunners side but the pacy winger has made already 16 appearances this season, scoring four goals.

The Frenchman is cautious about giving Oxlade-Chamberlain too much game time as he feels it may hamper the youngster's physical development, but he also admits he is finding it hard to resist fielding the player after his recent displays.

Oxlade-Chamberlain was omitted from Stuart Pearce's England squad for the friendly against Holland at Wembley, but Wenger believes the youngster is destined to make the cut for this summer's tournament in Poland and Ukraine.

"Physically we have to monitor him because after every game he can have a little problem," Wenger added.

"We know now that a large percentage of players who play a lot of games between the ages of 18 and 21 have bony stress responses. I never expected the number to be so high.

"[It happens] because your skeleton is not completely finished and the bones are not completely developed to absorb the kinds of shocks you get in the Premier League.

"We have to be cautious about that. But you are always in a trap when the player is as good as he is, like Jack Wilshere is too."

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