Jack Wilshere

Jack Wilshere has been pictured back in action with Arsenal kit on as the club’s former midfielder honed his fitness with the Gunners.

Mikel Arteta welcomed his former team-mate back with open arms but has insisted there is no chance Wilshere will rejoin the club and is just making use of the facilities.

Wilshere was seen running on the Colney training pitches on Thursday morning and the Arsenal boss was again asked if the Englishman would definitely not be offered a contract.

He told the club’s website: ‘What we should believe is that we want to help him to prepare for his next stage, physically, mentally, he wants to do his coaching badges again and we are prepared to fulfill all the needs that he wants. That’s basically the idea and there is nothing further than that.

‘I am very happy to have him back. We had a conversation with Jack and understand the needs that he has, the period that he is going through and I think everyone at the club agreed it was the right moment to help him.

‘We sat down with him and we listened to what he wanted to do and what stage he is and we are prepared to do anything we can to help him.

‘He is going to be training sometimes with us. He is going to be around the place. He is going to be continuing his coaching badges that he is very interested in.

‘(We will) try to get him fit, try to get his experiences across to our players, our young players, our academy and I think it is great influence to have around.’

Arteta had previously said: ‘We are willing to help him as much as we possibly can. He knows that and that’s the situation’, and Wilshere was buoyed by his words.

The 29-year-old added: ‘I think it [training with Arsenal] can only help me. As you said, being around good players, training with world-class players and, as well, just being in a team environment, is something that I am interested in.’

Wilshere first made his name at Arsenal after bursting onto the scene, becoming the club’s youngest ever player when he made his debut at 16 years and 236 days.

He went on to play 197 games over the next decade for the club and is still a valued ex-player. He was at the club with Arteta from 2011 to 2016.

But injuries blighted his time at the club with persistent ankle issues and questions about his lifestyle off the pitch eventually seeing him move on to West Ham.

His time at London Stadium lacked consistency with injury again playing a role and he joined Bournemouth last term on a short term deal.

Wilshere played 17 games and scored twice but his contract was not renewed in the summer.

It remains to be seen what’s next for the playmaker but it appears his long-term goal is to move into coaching, though he could yet have plenty to offer potential suitors on the pitch.


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