Positives have been few and far between for Arsenal supporters since the start of 2013 with draws against Southampton and Swansea, coupled with Sunday’s defeat to City, hardly what the doctor ordered ahead of further difficult fixtures this month.
In fact with Mikel Arteta out injured and no sign of new players being drafted in during the transfer window it’s pretty much all doom and gloom at the Emirates right now.
It’s lucky therefore that we supporters can cling to the rambunctious spirit and wagging tongue of little Jack Wilshere. Arsenal’s outstanding player against City, the 21-year-old appears to be closing in on top form following his lengthy spell on the treatment table; a state of affairs not lost on his teammates and manager.
Speaking to Arsenal.com after the 2-0 defeat at the weekend, captain Thomas Vermaelen praised the diminutive England international’s credentials:
“He is a world-class midfielder and he can only get better because he is young, coming back from more than a year out with injury. So I am very confident he will come back really strong.
“You can see that since he came back he is growing and growing. And I think at the moment he is at a good level.”
Arsene Wenger also reserved praise for his homegrown protégé while recognising that such is his influence in games that opponents often find themselves using illegal means to stop him.
“He [Wilshere] has a game that provokes tackles: he’s incisive, he goes forward. But you could see he has found a burst when he’s on the ball that is very interesting.”
While Wilshere’s not exactly been charged with carrying Arsenal on his own in recent weeks there has been a great deal of pressure on him in light of Santi Cazorla’s fatigued performances, Diaby’s fitness unreliability and the inconsistency of Ramsey, Chamberlain and Coquelin. He’s dealt with it well thus far, but now that Arteta is injured even more of the burden will fall on his young shoulders.
Assuming there won’t be any new arrivals, Wilshere really needs his teammates to step up and take responsibility for their respective performances while the boss also needs to ensure that he doesn’t reach the fabled injury red zone. How many times can a man keep getting up unscathed from kicks to his ankles?
Arseblog News hopes it’s a lot but even we recognise Jack’s not invincible.6,307 views