Jack Wilshire's injury sustained playing for England will mean that Arsenal will be without his services for six weeks or so. His club manager Arsene Wenger has reported that the player is "feeling very down" about the injury, but Wenger remains confident that he will be fit, ready and selected for the squad. He's probably right, but even if there are only minor doubts about his fitness, should he be selected?
If all goes well on the comeback trail for the player, the likelihood is that he will only have four or five games to prove his fitness before the end of the season. By that time, Roy Hodgson will need to have made a decision about the make up of his squad before the final announcement is made. with so little time for Wilshire to prepare selecting the Arsenal player must surely entail some measure of risk, and Hodgson has already declared that he will not select players who are "100% fit." It's surely a sensible approach, as is the manager's assertion that "loyalty won't guarantee anyone a place" on the 'plane to Brazil.
Of course there's a battle to get a game in Arsenal's midfield with the likes of Ramsey, Arteta, Ozil and Cazorla to name but a few, but Wilshire has only featured in 23 appearances this season, and will surely be doubtful of hitting the thirty mark before the season winds down. There is of course the argument that the injury could be a blessing in disguise, in that it allows the player 'a rest' before the tournament, but contrary to this, surely players need to be in case-hardened form, and ready to do battle, rather than fighting to regain match fitness.
England have a long a sorrowful trail of players who were 'carried' to tournaments as the squad just couldn't do without them. Not many if any, proved to be a gamble worth taking. With a number of other options vying for a midfield place in the England squad, Roy Hodgson may just decide that Wilshire will have to sit out this tournament.
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