Jack Wilshere refuses to rule out Arsenal return to give Mikel Arteta food for thought

Free agent Jack Wilshere left the Gunners three-and-a-half years ago but is currently training at London Colney following his Bournemouth exit last summer in a bid to stay fit as he looks for a new club

Video LoadingVideo UnavailableClick to playTap to playThe video will auto-play soon8CancelPlay nowMikel Arteta reflects on Arsenal’s defeat at LiverpoolByTom BlowDigital Sports Writer

  • 09:36, 26 Nov 2021
  • Updated10:09, 26 Nov 2021
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Jack Wilshere has refused to rule out a sensational Arsenal comeback.

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Wilshere, 29, hasn't played professional football since he was released by Championship outfit Bournemouth last summer.

The midfielder came through the ranks at Arsenal, making 197 senior appearances in all competitions for the club and winning two FA Cups before joining West Ham in 2018.

The 34-cap England international endured a torrid two-and-a-half-year spell with the Hammers, playing just 16 Premier League games, before rebuilding his career at Bournemouth.

Wilshere has struggled to find a new club since leaving the Cherries but has been training with Arsenal for nearly two months.

He's also been doing some coaching at London Colney and was recently described as the "best player" in training by youngster Bradley Ibrahim.

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Jack Wilshere could make a sensational return to Arsenal in January
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Mikel Arteta has praised the work Wilshere has been putting in on the training ground, and the Spaniard is facing a selection dilemma in January with the upcoming Africa Cup of Nations.

Both Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny are expected to play, leaving the Gunners boss short of potential options at the base of midfield.

Having spent big last summer, it's unlikely Arsenal will spend again in January, and Wilshere has refused to rule out the prospect of playing for the Gunners.

"I went there, very kindly invited by them to come and train, get my fitness back, which I’ve done," said the midfielder when asked by talkSPORT.

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"I am [training with the first team]. They’ve got a lot of midfielders, they’ve got Ainsley Maitland-Niles… I don't know mate. Honestly, I don't know."

Wilshere went on to admit he could feature for the U23s in the near future, although hasn't played for them yet.

"He wants to do his coaching badges again and we are prepared to fulfil all the needs that he wants," said Arteta in October.

"That is basically the idea and it is no further than that. I am very happy to have him back."

Manager Arteta is open to old faces returning to the Emirates, admitting former manager Arsene Wenger could be reintroduced into the fold.

"Hopefully we can bring him close, he will have a great time around this place," said Arteta on Thursday.

"I can not tell you now, but he would be a great help for the club. Things take time. We would be delighted to have him much closer."

And Wilshere has welcomed the possibility of Wenger returning.

"He obviously is an Arsenal man. He built that training ground, he knows everything that happens there. He’s built it into a successful place where winning was just the way of life.

"He created that winning mentality, so I think Mikel – I read his comments, he said he wants him close to him. “I think that would be a good move… he is Arsenal.

"When I was growing up, I used to think Arsenal was called Arsenal because of Arsene Wenger… I think it would be a good thing to have him back at the club."

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