Imagine having a good week because we won against a big team and immediate rival only to find in a couple days later that one of your best young midfielder will not be available for the start of next season. Wait. No need to imagine because it had already happened. If you haven’t already realise or found out, Stuart Pearce has listed Jack Wilshere in the initial squad of players for the upcoming European Under 21 championship in the summer.
Inclusive of his appearances for England, Wilshere has already been involved in 65 games this season. At least 48 of those, he has started. I don’t seem to remember a lot of times when he was substituted out. That is a lot of games even for a 19 year old. I do understand that a young body can cope with the demands of continuous football and has the propensity to recover quicker than when they are older but surely some sort of common sense is required in this instance.
He is not a bit part player. He is in his own right, first choice for Arsenal and first choice for England. Do not compare him with Spanish players who are playing in a league that is less strenuous than the English league. Lest we all forget, any under age competitions are purely for the purpose of developing emerging talents. Wilshere is already up there with the best and will not gain anything by going to this championship.
I fear it is Pearce’s personal interest to call him up. To show to the world that he would not bow to the demands of Arsene Wenger. Because if his intention really is to win the stupid competition, why didn’t he call up both Theo Walcott and Jay Spearing. Both are currently first choice at their respective club too. Both are at big clubs who gets to train with world class players and coaches. Surely both must be called up if Pearce wants to win the cup. There will only be one person to blame should Wilshere suffers any injuries or burnout when the next season comes.
Robin Van Persie and Wojciech Szczesny are in agreement that we need to make that step up next season. From challengers to winners. Many including me, were hoping that the step up was this season. We cannot keep making excuses and use the inexperience card. A lot of these players have amassed triple figures in terms of appearances for the club. Therefore, they’ve had enough playing time to pick up the nous of the game.
It should no longer be about making that step up. It should be about making sure we do not fumble and put in a consistent 8 months worth of solid performances. It is about using the hurt and pain from the previous seasons to fuel us to victory. More than most, to use the lessons from those hurt and improve on them so that none of them will ever feel that way again.
Finally, I would like to touch a little on the increase of ticket prices beginning of next season. The reason having to do with the rising inflation and the increase of the VAT charges. I do not reside in London or UK for that matter and I do not have the pleasure of going to watch at the Grove. I will not pretend that I do. Yet, I feel for the supporters who do go.
Prices are increasing everywhere and it is hard enough to cope already without having to plump in big figures to watch your favourite team in action. Arsenal are already charging one of the most expensive tickets in the league already. The club should try to help the supporters. I do get that ticket sales represents a big income to the club and rightly so. Yet, I’m sure there are many other ways in which the club can recoup that amount without putting extra burdens on their supporters. I can’t tell you what are the areas, I’ll leave that to the experts to tell you. Or you can follow Tim Payton on Twitter for more updates.