Wilshere 'lost focus' after arrest

Click to follow
The Independent Football

Stuart Pearce, the England Under-21 manager, feels Jack Wilshere is fully focused on football again – but cannot guarantee the young Arsenal midfielder a place in the side for tonight's crucial European Championship qualifier against Lithuania at Colchester United's Weston Homes Community Stadium. Wilshere was left on the bench in Portugal for the 1-0 win on Friday, with Pearce suggesting the 18-year-old had "taken his eye off the ball" after he was arrested and bailed in the wake of a late-night fracas in South Kensington.

Pearce, though, maintains the midfielder is back on his game but said there were no guarantees on his team selection for a match his side must win to stand any chance of making the play-offs.

"I have seen a touch more focus [from Wilshere]," Pearce said. "Leading into the Portugal game, he was swapping phone calls with his agent and one to two other people in regards to paper articles which were going on. We just did not feel it was right to start him in Portugal. Since then we think his focus has been much better."