Poor Jack Wilshere has suffered terribly from injuries after his brilliant breakthrough season as a teenager, but Arsenal have always stood by him and given him every chance to rehabilitate and try to earn his place back in Wenger’s first team. After nearly managing a whole season of fitness at Bournemouth last season, he has now returned to the Emirates and we are at last seeing him return to form in an Arsenal shirt and is now on the cusp of breaking back into the first team.
Jack says he has now matured and is now happy just to be fit and ready for when Wenger calls on him to play, and he sounds very relaxed and happy to stay beyond this season. He doesn’t mention his contract talks but he doesn’t sound like he has any interest in moving away from Arsenal. “I think [I have changed],” Wilshere said. “I’m married now and I’ve got two kids, I’m 25.
“Since I was 18, 19 you do a lot of growing up. People say to you when you’re 21, 22 that you’ll grow up a lot in the next few years and you’re just like ‘Nah, no chance’. But then, when you look back, you were doing things at 21 that you wouldn’t think about doing now.
“So I think I’ve changed, I’ve grown up. I’ve got a wife, two kids and I’m getting older now.
“As you get older, you appreciate what you’ve got and your game time, your minutes and that you’re fit. Not just fit and playing, because I’m fit at the minute, and I’m not necessarily playing but I’m happy and I’m available for selection and that’s all you can ask for.
“There are going to be times in your career when you’re injured, you’re going to miss out on things and you have to use those moments and those hours in the gym as motivation for when you’re back to want to stay there.”
There has been much talk about Jack’s contract running out in the summer, but both him and Wenger seem confident that an agreement will be made for him to remain at the club. Jack made his stance clear just a few days ago. He said, “I’ve got a great relationship with the boss, I’ve heard him speak in press conferences he’s ensured me I will get some playing time.
“I want to stay at this club, I’ve said that many times.
“I left last year to get some football, I’ve done that and I’m back now and I’m fit and ready to play.
“The future will take care of itself. All I have got to do is stay fit and play my football.
“I’m a proud Englishman and I want to be playing whenever I can.
“Unfortunately it’s down to the manager who didn’t select me and said I need more football and that’s what I’ve got to do.”
With Wenger recently saying that Jack could play in Ozil or Alexis position, it looks like he will definitely have a place in the starting line-up next season, so it seems certain he will still be with us, perhaps until the end of his career?