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Jack Wilshere's career won't be rekindled at Arsenal

Thursday 3rd August 2017
Jack Wilshere was in Arsenal's first team squad for the Emirates Cup. Given Arsene Wenger's options in midfield, it's not a place he should wish to stay. 

Arsenal ended the tournament on a disappointing note, although its 2-1 defeat to Sevilla still allowed the Gunners to claim the Cup based on goals scored.

Wenger largely went with his best players for the competition, with most first team squad members back in training. Those who were absent afforded the Frenchman an opportunity to look at his former wunderkind, Wilshere.

A graduate of Arsenal's youth academy, the gifted young midfielder had a great start to his Emirates career. Repeated injuries have caused him to suffer a huge decline in the last few seasons. He lost his vigor to the point Wenger no longer included him in his plans. He was sent on loan to AFC Bournemouth for the 2016-17 season. The move was engineered to see if he would be able to perform better away from the London spotlight.

In his 27 league appearances on the south coast, the 25-year-old only recorded two assists. That is simply a bad record for a player who was once a Gooner heartthrob. Wilshere failed to make any significant impact at Dean Court.
His injury history is a sore sight, and the failure in his career can be attributed to this. Bournemouth simply couldn't afford to give him more time to rediscover his game. Just take a look at the Cherries pursuit of fellow loanee Nathan Ake, from Chelsea. Eddie Howe was determined to have him in his squad permanently and spent £20 million just to acquire his services. Wilshere has not been afforded the same VIP treatment.

However, he has returned to full training in Arsenal's first team, putting Wenger in turmoil over his future. Is anything left for him at the Emirates?

With Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil, Granit Xhaka, Francis Coquelin and Mohamed Elneny all competing for a midfield spot, Wilshere's chances of breaking into the first team are very slim. If Wenger had no use for him in the starting XI last season, he will probably be ignored again this campaign.

Since the window opened, Wilshere has been linked with a move to West Ham. Reports suggest he is open to the proposal, especially as it would not require new living arrangements.

Known for his leadership skills on the pitch, Wilshere was technically gifted, with movement, vision, and passing combination play all in his tool kit. His ability to make on-spot decisions was also exemplary. A move to the Hammers could give Wilshere an opportunity to begin again. A permanent move away from the Gunners would help him focus all his energy on re-honing his skills. He could even change position, especially with Manuel Lanzini impressing after Dmitri Payet's abrupt January desertion. Wilshere definitely needs to find a position at which he still excels, then play there regularly.

He would not be handed such opportunity at Arsenal. Thus, it suits him well to say his goodbyes. Without a doubt, Wenger, Arsenal devotees, and the man himself will wonder what might have been. Jack Wilshere was a victim of circumstances in the past but his footballing future will be killed off if he continues to struggle for first team play at the Emirates.
Adebayo Temitope

Temitope, an ardent soccer fan. I may be based in Lagos but I watch as much European football as I can. I've been writing about football for several years, before I joined IRIAW you may have seen my work on The Football Weeks. I'm also a keen music fan


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