Gareth Southgate has explained why he has chosen to recall Jack Wilshere to the England squad for the forthcoming games against Scotland and Spain.
The Arsenal midfielder, currently on loan at Bournemouth, was left out of the win against Slovakia, under Sam Allardyce, as well as Southgate’s previous games against Malta and Slovenia.
However, the 24-year-old has returned to form, and crucially fitness, at the Vitality Stadium, having finally played his first 90 minutes in over two years against Tottenham in October.
Wilshere is beginning to impress with Eddie Howe’s side who are currently 13th in the Premier League table going into the international break and Southgate says he has never doubted Wilshere’s quality.
“I don’t think there has ever been any questioning of his quality,” Southgate said via ESPN.
“We’ve felt for a long time that he’s a player that can play at the highest level, so I guess as much as anything it’s been his match sharpness.
- Arsenal must outmanoeuvre Galatasaray to win race for £2m ‘bargain’ transfer
- Arsenal reportedly set to sign free agent after impressive trial
- Arsenal have ‘concrete interest’ in signing Bayern Munich II star
“The fact he’s had three 90 minutes with Bournemouth and I’ve been to two of their other games, I think it’s a good moment to bring him back into the squad.”
Wilshere is joined in the England squad by fellow Gunner Theo Walcott, who returned to action after injury in the 1-1 draw with Tottenham on Sunday at the Emirates.
Walcott is Arsenal’s joint top scorer this season with eight goals and is the only other Arsenal man in the squad with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain having missed out this time around.
Wilshere’s inclusion in the England squad suggests his move to Bournemouth is paying off the midfielder with the 24-year-old finally starting to prove his fitness, his quality, as Southgate says, has never been in doubt.