Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker spoke fondly about midfielder Jack Wilshere after he impressed in the 1-0 win triumph over Doncaster Rovers in the League Cup.
The England international made his first Gunners start in 493 days, and played the entire game scattered.
Injuries have hampered Wilshere’s progress over the years, but the 25-year-old provided a solid performance against Doncaster, which led to special praise from club-captain Per Mertesacker. Speaking after the game, the World Cup winner was pleased to have the midfielder back on the playing field, and he admits that he is getting back to his old self.
He said: “It was very good to have him back out there. You can see that he’s getting more comfortable with his position now. He’s brave now and he trusts his body. That’s the most important thing, that he’s capable of playing 90 minutes. He will just grow with that and he was vocal as well, which was important for us, especially at the end. He kept the ball well in tight situations and to come out of that is vintage Jack. That’s what we want to see from him in the future here at Arsenal.”
Arsene Wenger named a relatively strong line-up for the third round League Cup tie against Doncaster, and this gives an idea that the Frenchman is eager to win the trophy which has eluded him in his time in charge. The likes of Theo Walcott and Jack Wilshere are still from becoming regulars in the Premier League, but the Cup and Europa League games provide them with the platform to step into the Premier League, should they be required in the future.
Wilshere missed out on making the matchday squad for the 0-0 draw against Chelsea last weekend, but his latest performance may have done enough to assure him of a place on the bench.