The magical Messi, who also started life playing wide on the wing, scored a staggering 55 goals in all competitions for Barcelona last season and has continued in a similar vein this term.
Now Walcott is hoping to get the chance to show that he can make an equally dramatic transition and show what he can do as a leading striker.
Walcott delivered his plea for a career-changing positional change in a heart-to-heart with manager Arsene Wenger.
He said: "I believe I can give so much more to the team playing up front, with the runs I can make off the ball. And I just love hitting the back of the net as well.
"At times I feel a bit, if not wasted, then in and out of games on the right. I just want it more and more, having scored a few last season. I'm not a winger and I think plenty of people know that.
"I've done OK out there, but I'd love to play down the middle."