Everton forward Theo Walcott is doing very well away from Goodison Park on loan this season.
The 31-year-old joined Everton from Arsenal for a fee of around £20million in January 2018 and has gone on to make 85 appearances for the Toffees.
However, Walcott is into the last year of his Everton contract and only played 12 minutes of the Toffees’ first four Premier League games this season.
The England ace was allowed to rejoin Southampton, his former club, on loan in the summer after it became clear that he would not be playing regular football at Goodison this term.
To date, Walcott has made eight appearances for the Saints this term, registering two goals and two assists, and has helped Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side to third in the table.
“I am very happy that he is comfortable here now and that he is happy to play for us and there is no reason why we should not think about keeping him longer here,” the Southampton boss told PA.
“It is always the same with older players that we must see how fit they are and see how much they can run, how professional they are.
“When you take these parameters for him then on every parameter he is on very nearly the highest level. He is very fit, he likes to run and he is very big benefit for the team.
“Let us first go through the season, let’s give him the chance to play and the chance to show up, the chance to play consistently at this level. But there is no reason why we should not keep him here longer with us.”
While Walcott has done reasonably well at Everton, it was clear that he was surplus to Carlo Ancelotti’s requirements and he has most likely played his last game in the blue shirt.
The player’s experience, talents and versatility, being able to play on either wing as well as up front, have proven a key asset for Southampton, who are flying high in the standings.