Arsenal boss must budge on Wilshere to see best of midfielder

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Arsenal have arguably been in a quandary regarding their holding midfield position since Alex Song left for Barcelona in the summer of 2012.

Thanks to England redefining Jack Wilshere’s role, though, the answer to the problem has now been spelled out in neon lights.

Performing as the deep-lying point of the Three Lions diamond midfield, Wilshere has excelled for his country and surely now Arsenal must follow suit.

However, Gooners eager to see this happen, may be left waiting like the unfortunate bride at the altar judging by Arsene Wenger’s recent comments on the matter.

Wenger said: “He (Jack Wilshere) is not a ball-winner. I believe he is more a guy who you want to get close to the final third, to keep him deep you take a big part of his efficiency away.

“Jack is a guy who likes to penetrate when there are many people, he can provoke free-kicks, he can create openings.”It (a deeper role) would be detrimental to his strengths and a position which is not his strength.”

The Frenchman makes some salient points, not least that Wilshere can provoke free-kicks or create openings.

But crucially he can now do that from further back, as his previously untapped range of passing is a weapon of immense accuracy meaning he can create said openings from 30 or 40 yards now instead.

Furthermore, with more of the pitch to gallop into, Wilshere can make the ground without running into trouble in the final third, which has been among his most frustrating hallmarks in his more advanced role.

Hopefully Wenger witnessed the fact that Wilshere still popped up in the opposition box against Scotland on a number occasions too, most notably passing up a great chance to volley home after another England counter attack.

Wenger’s stubborn nature is unlikely to see him waver, though with Arsenal trailing Premier League leaders Chelsea by 12 points and way out at 40/1 for the title, he may wish to consider giving it some serious thought.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.