In today’s news roundup, we take a look at the new contract offered to England international Jack Wilshere. The midfielder has been offered the contract in the wake of interest shown by champions Manchester City. Also in the news is a minor injury crisis at League leaders Chelsea, who might be without several key first team players when they make their trip to the Emirates at the end of the month.
In other news, Arsenal have been issued a hands-off warning over Petr Cech, and Wilshere insists that he is fit enough to play for the first team again. All this and more in today’s roundup.
Manchester City looking at Wilshere; Wenger offers new contract
Jack Wilshere is Arsenal through and through, but the England international has been linked with a surprise move to Manchester City this summer, according to the Daily Mail.
The reigning Premier League champions have somewhat collapsed in the second half of the season, and have gradually seen themselves fall away from league leaders Chelsea. The Citizens are believed to be planning some major restructuring come the end of the campaign, with bringing more home grown and English players to the club their main aim. Wilshere is among those they are targeting, with Liverpool duo Jordan Henderson and Raheem Sterling also being considered.
They currently have Frank Lampard, Joe Hart and James Milner on their books, but with Milner’s contract up in the summer and Lampard heading to MLS, they could be left seriously lacking in homegrown talent. However, it is hard to see Wilshere, who is one of the most loyal Gunners, even considering an offer to leave the Emirates.
Nevertheless, manager Arsene Wenger is considering offering the 23-year old a new contract to absolutely ensure that his future is at the Emirates, according to the Telegraph.
The manager is set to issue a hands-off warning in a press conference today, as the Frenchman still sees Wilshere as an integral part of the club, with the further incentive of earning £150,000 per week if he extends until 2020. Wilshere’s current contract expires in 2018.
Chelsea injury crisis: League leaders may travel to Emirates without key players
Chelsea got off to a blistering start this season, seeming unbeatable and on course for several trophies. However, over the past couple of months, they have stuttered somewhat, losing their way in the FA Cup and the Champions League while also struggling in the Premier League. Now, with seven games to go in the season they look to have the League title in the bag with only Arsenal having a realistic chance of catching them. To even think about doing that, we will need to win emphatically against them when they travel to the Emirates on the 26th of April. And we might just have been handed a golden opportunity to do that, with several Chelsea players reportedly doubtful for the clash.
Top of the list is Spanish striker Diego Costa, amid fears the striker could be out for an ‘extended period’. Costa tweaked his hamstring at the weekend against Stoke City and was forced off just 11 minutes after coming on as a substitute. The club say they are still assessing his hamstring but The Sun claim that a source close to the player has told them “It’s worse than before”. Jose Mourinho meanwhile said the Spanish international would be out for around two weeks. It remains to be seen who is correct.
They could potentially also be without both Nemanja Matic and Cesc Fabregas, who are both just one yellow card away from a two match ban, as evidenced on The FA’s official website. With tough fixtures against a resurgent QPR and Manchester United coming up for Chelsea, it is very likely that the midfielders could pick up a yellow card and receive the automatic suspension. This, coupled with Costa’s injury, could see the Blues drop points even before travelling to the Emirates.
Mourinho will not sell Cech to title rivals
Arsene Wenger is reportedly keen on bringing Chelsea shot-stopper Petr Cech to the Emirates this summer, but Jose Mourinho is unwilling to let him move to a direct rival, according to Goal.
Wojciech Szczesny has been less than impressive this season, and has consequently seen his starting spot usurped by David Ospina. The Colombian has been solid so far, but hasn’t exactly lit up the Premier League. Cech would arguably be an improvement on both players, although age is not on the 32-year-old’s side.
Goal reports that Wenger is plotting a £10m bid for the experienced keeper, but is well aware that Chelsea are likely to shoot him down:
Cech is still one of the best goalkeepers around and he would be the perfect signing, but the message from Chelsea is not to bother wasting our time.
Mourinho has come to terms with the fact that he will lose Cech when the window opens, but is determined to see him move abroad.
Wilshere ready to aid team in title push
Jack Wilshere has been out injured since November, but is nearing a return to first team action; claiming he is ready to play a part in our end of season push, according to an interview with arsenal.com:
You can train as much as you like but you can’t get that match fitness unless you play.
In the Premier League you know how quick it is so you have to get back to that speed.
I feel like I’m ready to play some part. When you’re injured you look at your comeback date and the games around that time.
The one that stands out is the FA Cup semi-final but even before that we’ve got big games and we’ve got to go to Man United as well so there’s a chance to play this season.
The England international lined up alongside fellow first-teamers Mikel Arteta and Abou Diaby during our 4-1 win against Stoke in the Under-21 side, and played the entire 90 minutes.
Other interesting stories on allarsenal.com