Banterous Wilshere not rushing Arsenal return

Matt Stead

Jack Wilshere insists he’s “not going to rush” a return from his latest injury at Arsenal, but that he is eager to fight for his place in the first-team upon his comeback.

Reports claimed over the weekend that the 23-year-old was targeting a return to the Arsenal first-team for the hectic Christmas fixture schedule, but Wilshere is refusing to name a date for his comeback.

“I’m not going to rush it. I’ll make sure my body’s right and at the moment I’m feeling good,” he said. “We’re still early in the season and the busiest part of the season is coming up.

“I want to be part of this team and I proved last season that I can get back and fight for a place. I know it’s not going to be easy but that’s what I want to do.

“I’m working as hard as I can to try to come back. I know what it takes because unfortunately I’ve been injured a few times in my career and I know what it takes to get back to full fitness.

“Mentally this one has been the toughest to take because I had a big injury last year, came back, got myself fit, back in good form, played for England. Then I cut my holiday short for two weeks and came in to try to get myself right for this season.

“I thought, ‘This season I need to be fit for the whole season and go into the Euros with a whole season behind me’. Unfortunately on the last day of pre-season I got injured so it was probably the toughest one for me to take.”

During his time on the sidelines Wilshere has taken solace in the presence of fellow long-term absentees Tomas Rosicky and Danny Welbeck, as well as “a bit of banter”.

“At the moment it’s me, Danny and Tomas because we’re the only ones with long-term injuries,” said the midfielder. “Just being around other people, speaking to them and having a bit of banter with them helps as well.”