Wenger taking care of Wilshere

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger knows he will have to tread carefully with Jack Wilshere for the rest of this season.

Last Updated: 22/11/13 at 11:12 Post Comment

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger knows he will have to tread carefully with Jack Wilshere if the England midfielder is to last the distance for club and country this season.

The 21-year-old featured in each of England's internationals at Wembley this week and last, where Roy Hodgson's men suffered back-to-back defeats.

Wenger played down any talk of a row with the Football Association of how Wilshere was deployed by Hodgson.

However, the Gunners boss remains acutely aware of the need to avoid burn-out with Wilshere, who was ruled out of contention for both Euro 2012 and the London Olympics later the same summer because of injury.

"We play 60 games per year and Jack will certainly have to be managed - unless his pains go completely, then he will be used when needed," said Wenger, who will have forward Theo Walcott available again following a two-month injury absence when Barclays Premier League action resumes with the visit of Southampton on Saturday.

"If there is an alert on his ankles, we will of course take advice from the medical department and use him when he can really be used."

Wenger continued: "I have been told by the medical team that there is no concern in the long term. He is just still recovering from his inflammation."

There had been reports Arsenal were at loggerheads with the FA over Hodgson's decision to use Wilshere, who came off the bench against Germany, twice over the international break.

Wenger, though, said: "There is no problem between the FA and Arsenal Football Club. I don't know where that idea comes from because he was supposed to play.

"He was available for England, they used him like they wanted and if he had played the two games I would have been perfectly happy.

"Two full games - there was no restriction there at all."

Wenger also confirmed England midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who also harbours hopes to go to the World Cup, remains on course to return from his knee injury at the start of 2014.

"I believe he is still at least one month away from competition but he has had no real setback," said Wenger.

"So the new year is a reasonable target."

Defender Per Mertesacker scored the winning goal to beat England 1-0 at Wembley on Tuesday.

Wenger confirmed preliminary talks over a new deal for the popular 6ft 6in centre-back had begun.

"We are in the process of talking, yes," he said.

"He has one and a half years to go, so that is a long time."

Arsenal will be without suspended midfielder Mathieu Flamini against the Saints, who have surprised with their rise up the table this season.

Mauricio Pochettino feels his men could stay the course and gatecrash the top four come May.

Wenger said: "You cannot rule anybody out. If they can keep the defensive record they have then they can be very ambitious.

"All the teams want to press and to win the ball back quickly - there's nothing special in there, but (Southampton) do it well and that is why they are efficient defensively."


New Sky Bet customers: Claim free £5 bet every week


Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

E

ven if United were to sign CR7 & Messi to play upfront, the fact remains Fletcher and Cleverly are playing in midfield. That's where the problem is. Fletcher is too slow with an awful pass, while Cleverly is simply rubbish

mrunited4life
Di Maria - A Signing of Necessity, or Opportunity?

T

hese days, these days, you can't say something racist without somebody saying that you're a racist.

tk421
'Wrong' Views Not Silenced By Shouting...

D

rop Rooney (he's so disappointing, overrated and overpaid), and play Di Maria and RVP upfront, much like the set up at the Netherlands team with Roben and RVP...

eric bush3
Di Maria - A Signing of Necessity, or Opportunity?

Footer 365

Transfer news: Alex Song and Danny Welbeck linked with Tottenham

Tottenham are discussing the potential signings of Alex Song and Danny Welbeck on loan, according to Sky sources.

Premier League: Neil Warnock feels he owes Crystal Palace fans

New Crystal Palace boss Neil Warnock feels he owes the club after the way his first spell in charge ended.

Transfer news: Liverpool-owned Divock Origi reveals Tottenham snub

Divock Origi has revealed that he rejected an offer from Tottenham Hotspur to move to Liverpool this summer.

Mail Box

A United Fan Happy To See Welbeck Go

One United fan doesn't understand all the fuss over Danny Welbeck, while we also have mails on Arsenal being Arsenal, curious transfers and how to pronounce 'Gaal'...

Should Kagawa Play Ahead Of Mata?

That's one question posed in the afternoon mailbox, although it looks like the Japanese playmaker could soon be on his way. Plus, tipping Palace to go down under Warnock...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property