Arsenal and England national team star Jack Wilshere has not played a single minute of competitive soccer during the current 2015/16 campaign. The combative midfielder suffered a hairline fracture to his leg reportedly following a tackle from Gunner teammate Gabriel back in early August. While initially it was thought that Wilshere would only miss a few weeks due to the injury, it required surgery and the 24-year-old has been relegated to the sidelines for the last seven months.
Not only was Wilshere forced to have surgery, but doctors also placed a metal plate in the injured leg as well. Following a lengthy absence from the training ground, Wilshere began running within the last couple of weeks. Although news of his return to training is positive, it appears that the metal plate is causing the player some discomfort. Despite the discomfort, both Wilshere and his doctors are hopeful that the manageable pain will decrease once the injured leg gains more strength.
However, if issues with the leg persist, the midfielder could opt to have the plate removed, which in turn would all but end his bid in making England’s Euro 2016 roster.
If, though, all goes to plan and he can progress into heavier training, Wilshere will likely be including in the Euro 2016 roster by England manager Roy Hodgson. This, apparently, will still be the case even if the player never plays a match for Arsenal during the remainder of the current season.
Hodgson spoke to talkSPORT about the Wilshere dilemma earlier in the month. “Our information from Arsenal is that he will be back in good time,” said Hodgson. “He is not guaranteed a place in the squad but I think his past performances merit a place in the squad. I think he played four games on the trot [for England] and was man-of-the-match in all of them.”
[Wilshere] is a very decisive player for us, even to such an extent that he has changed our style of play,” continued the manager. “He can get the rest of the team playing and make things happen. I don’t want to dismiss his chances but I accept that he has to be fit. I won’t say about Jack what I said about Wayne Rooney.”
Assuming Wilshere will be fit for the European tournament this summer, Fabian Delph and Danny Drinkwater would be the players under serious threat to not be included in the squad. Delph’s potential exclusion from the England roster probably wouldn’t ruffle too many feathers, but many people are backing Drinkwater’s involvement in the England national team.
The Leicester City midfielder has been one of the unsung heroes for the surprise club so far this season. While Drinkwater has never received an England cap, he will be included in the team’s friendlies against Germany (Saturday) and Netherlands (Tuesday). If the 26-year-old midfielder performs well in these matches, it could make Hodgson’s decision to bring Wilshere to Euros more complicated.
Nevertheless, Wilshere is a special player. He was England’s top performer for a considerable amount of time before the injury in August and has the ability to take over matches for the Three Lions. Can the same be said about Drinkwater and Delph? The versatile and well-rounded midfielder can make tackles in the middle of the pitch, distribute the ball to his teammates, and possesses the ability to score a goal as well (as seen HERE).
This clock is running, however. Wilshere has less than three months to prepare for the tournament. England begin their Euro push in 78 days, when they face off against Russia in Marseille, France on June 11th.
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