Danny Welbeck has hit back at Troy Deeney after the Watford striker questioned his inclusion in Gareth Southgate’s most recent England squad.
Deeney has played a prominent role in Watford’s impressive start to the season with the Hornets currently in fourth place, two places and a point ahead of the Gunners who they meet on Saturday at the Emirates Stadium.
Southgate opted to include Welbeck for the matches against Spain and Switzerland despite the former Manchester United striker having failed to start a single Premier League game this season.
Deeney, who infamously accused Arsenal of lacking ‘cajones’ following their 2-1 defeat at Vicarage Road last season, felt his performances merited international recognition and Welbeck’s continued involvement sent out the wrong message to aspiring England players.
He said: ‘If you look at a Danny Ings, Glenn Murray, Callum Wilson, we would probably all be arguing well what do I need to be in the team?
‘Because no offence to Danny Welbeck, I’ve got a lot of time for Danny Welbeck, but he’s not playing but he’s still being picked, so is it a case that’s just the team?’
Welbeck, however, responded after scoring twice in Arsenal’s 3-1 Carabao Cup win over Brentford last night, saying: ‘It is for Gareth to decide who he picks in the squad, not for me or you to say.
‘What I can do is just focus on me, not focus on anything else that is the most important thing.’
The 27-year-old, who has entered the final 12 months of his current contract, has now scored four goals in all competition this season and his hopeful he is closing in on an opportunity to establish himself in Unai Emery’s first choice forward line.
He added: ‘You have got to wait for your opportunity,” he said when asked about not starting a league game so far this season.
‘A few of the lads had a bit more of a pre-season than me which made it a bit difficult, I came back a bit later than the others.
‘I got 90 minutes last week, 90 minutes today and I’m just going to build on it from there and keep improving.’
More: Arsenal FC
Aaron Ramsey targeted by two clubs as Arsenal withdraw contract offer
Danny Welbeck hits back at Troy Deeney ahead of Arsenal vs Watford
Unai Emery responds to claims he barred Joachim Low from seeing Mesut Ozil