Arsenal pair Jack Wilshere and Theo Walcott fit for Southampton
Frenchman also denies rift relating to Wilshere's England appearances
Thursday 21 November 2013
Arsene Wenger last night insisted that Jack Wilshere is fit to play for Arsenal against Southampton on Saturday, and that he was relaxed about his involvement for England during the recent internationals.
Arsenal midfielder Wilshere played in both Wembley friendlies, completing 71 minutes against Chile last Friday before being named as a substitute for the Germany game on Tuesday. He came on with 26 minutes left of the 1-0 defeat, during which time he sustained a kick to the calf.
Wenger, though, moved quickly yesterday to say that Wilshere was fit to face third-placed Southampton in the Premier League at the Emirates tomorrow, and that he did not mind how Roy Hodgson had used him. “First of all Jack is not injured, that was not the right information,” Wenger told Arsenal.com.
“Secondly, I have no problem with the FA, they respected completely what they told me and it was [for Wilshere] to play in one game and be on the bench in the other. They did that very well. So there is no misunderstanding there.”
Wilshere’s fitness is naturally an important topic at both club and international level as he waits to rediscover his rhythm and form after a lengthy injury lay-off. Wilshere has started just one of Arsenal’s last five games, and that was the home Capital One Cup defeat to Chelsea. Although Wenger has repeatedly said he sees Wilshere as a deep-lying midfielder, he has been primarily used in wide areas this season.
Wenger has other good injury news, with Theo Walcott set to return to the first-team squad for Saturday’s game. The England winger has not featured for three months with abdominal injury.
“Theo will be back for Saturday in the squad,” said Wenger. “He’s completely fit again. He has not played for a long time, of course, he has not played even a reserve team game, but I will put him in the squad on Saturday.”
Tomas Rosicky has been ill and will be assessed today, while Lukas Podolski is three weeks away from a return but Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will be out for at least one more month.
Actress isn't a fan of Ed Miliband
Do you qualify – and how do you get it?
The Mayor of London's sister, Rachel Johnson, apologises for shocking tweet about the PM
Latest in Sport
Phil Hughes injury: Cricket world reels as Australian opener fights for his life
Phil Hughes: Batsman had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him
Manchester City vs Bayern Munich comment: Frank Lampard's part in City win shows folly of letting him leave
This letter from a reader explains why women can’t play football
Manchester City vs Bayern Munich: Nasri admits City stars will be sold if they fail in Europe
- 2 Black Friday 2014: Opening times for Asda, John Lewis, PC World, GAME and Argos
- 4 Jeremy Hunt: 'I took my children to A&E because I didn't want to wait for GP appointment'
- 5 Girl, 7, gets Tesco to remove 'stupid' sign suggesting superheroes are 'for boys'
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
Revealed: How the world gets rich – from privatising British public services