Frank Lampard has claimed that Jack Wilshere should be able to use the Europa League to get his Arsenal career back on track this season.
The 25 year-old is into the final season of his current contract, and isn’t believed to have been offered a new deal as of yet, and must prove his fitness in order to earn one.
Wilshere should be thankful that the Gunners are playing Europa League football this term, as it looks likely to give him a platform to play his way into contention for the first-team side, whereas previous seasons would have seen opportunities all-the-more scarce for those fringe players.
Wilshere has shown a huge amount of ability and potential previously, but after a number of injury setbacks, he will be keen to get back to playing his best, and proving he still retains more than enough to have a bright future in the game.
Frank Lampard believes the EL will see Wenger include the player more regularly than he would have without Thursday night football, and believes Jack can earn a contract if he can stay fit.
Lampard said: “The Europa League is a great opportunity for Jack Wilshere to show why he should get a new contract at Arsenal.
“With the difficult schedule of Thursday-Sunday games, Arsene Wenger will rotate a lot more – and that should mean more appearances for Jack.
“There have been positive signs already. He was very impressive as a substitute against Cologne, then against Doncaster last week, so he will surely play a part at Bate Borisov on Thursday.
“Everyone knows his quality, he’s just had a very difficult time with injuries. There is nothing worse for a player mentally and physically to keep having these setbacks.
“There is a lot of talk over Jack’s future, because he is out of contract at the end of the season.
“I’m sure Arsenal would prefer to keep him, but they will want to see that he’s fit first. But, by doing that, Jack will be in a position of strength if he gets 100 per cent again.
“There will be a lot of clubs willing to take the risk because they have seen what Jack can do in the past.”
Is Thursday night football a blessing for some fringe players? Will Jack earn a new contract with Arsenal?