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Arsenal ‘must target Premier League title’ after FA Cup win

Arsenal ‘must target Premier League title’ after FA Cup win

Kenny Awotorebo

Arsenal forward Theo Walcott says the Gunners have to challenge for next season’s Premier League title after they successfully retained the FA Cup.

Walcott, 26, scored the first goal as Arsenal comfortably defeated Aston Villa 4-0 in the final at Wembley.

But the Gunners came third in the Premier League, 12 points behind champions Chelsea, and have not won the league title since the 2003-04 season.

“The Premier League has to be the next target for us,” said Walcott.

“That’s two FA Cup wins now but this is one of the best squads we have had at Arsenal so we should be achieving more. We need to start well in the Premier League next year.”

Walcott suffered a serious knee injury in January 2014 that saw him miss the 2014 FA Cup final, where Arsenal beat Hull City 3-2 at Wembley.

The England international only played two games in November before another injury kept him out for a further two months.

But he finished the season strongly with a hat-trick in Arsenal’s last Premier League match, a 4-1 win against West Brom as Walcott was preferred to Olivier Giroud up front.

Walcott opened the scoring in the 40th minute at Wembley before further goals from Alexis Sanchez, Per Mertesacker and Giroud secured the victory.

“I missed all this last year and to be part of it this year is a dream come true,” added Walcott.

“My family are here and I have worked so hard, as has everyone to do this. I want to thank the manager for picking me and having faith in me and hopefully I repaid him.

“I also want to thank the physios and everyone who has looked after me. This is for them.”