Can you believe that Jack Wilshere has missed close to 1,000 days of football at Arsenal? If you did, then you know how quickly Wilshere moves from the thick of action to the doctors table. If you didn’t, well… you are either Wilshere or his doctor.
With the latest injury setback confirmed by the club as requiring a surgery, Wilshere is set for another lengthy rehabilitation. It could be several weeks before the England midfielder can even think of returning to action.
At the start of the summer, as is the norm, there were indications from Wilshere that he wants to spend an injury-free season. And almost immediately he went on another injury break. Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was also hopeful that he would have his star midfielder available for selection more than previous seasons.
And on the sidelines of the Champion’s League opener against Dinamo Zagreb, Wenger spoke of his admiration for Wilshere; especially his resilience and ability to recover from injuries. “Like every player, he wants to play football and he is disappointed, but he has shown in the past he can deal with that,” Le Prof said.
“I think he was determined to do it quickly and come back as quickly as possible.”
There is never any doubt about the potential or the impact of Wilshere on the field. The question has always been his ability to stay fit. Frustratingly for the supporters, he has developed a knack of picking up injuries at regular intervals of time.
But, what is commendable indeed is the mental strength of the player. The lengthy absence from action is never easy for any player. The more one spends time away from action, the more doubts creep in. And if the induced break is because of injury, there would be more questions. Wilshere definitely has inner strength to make so many comebacks from innumerable setbacks. Though none of these are physically career threatening, each of them is potentially confidence-crippling.
“This kind of injury is not a kind of injury which can damage your career.” Wenger continued. “It is just a bone that did not heal well. They need to put a little clip in. That is nothing major, not a career-threatening injury.
“I am not a bone specialist, so I would not like to give too many details. I have been explained the situation, but I leave that to the medical people. There is nothing malicious in there, just a part of his bone that has not healed.
“When you are injured and you come back, you always go through a vulnerable period, where you need to strengthen your body again, to gain competition,”
“I think he is young enough to get over that and I hope his body will stabilise, I am confident he will and that he can make a career his talent deserves.”
Let’s hope that Wenger is right. For a young player of his potential and skill, Wilshere spends too much time away from action. This won’t be his last induced break but hopefully, it would be the last lengthy one.