Wilshere - I Don't Take Football For Granted
Midfielder Jack Wilshere has been speaking about how his time on the sidelines in recent means has matured him as a person and a player and how he now no longer takes football for granted.
With Arsene Wenger saying 'he's got a few knocks and bruises that build a man' after he made his return from injury for Arsenal in the game against Cologne last month, the 25 year old has been reflecting on his numerous battles from from injury since breaking into our first team as a fresh faced 16 year old and he agreed with the gaffer that his experiences have helped him mature in the game.
Speaking to the Official Site Wilshere explained.
'When I first broke into the first team, even looking back when I was 16, you take things for granted. I was training every day and when you`re a 16-year-old, you can do that. As you get older your body changes, you pick up injuries, you have to be more careful with certain situations and it makes you stronger as well. I`ve always loved playing football and that`s what I wanted to do.'
He went on to say.
'Of course there`s been times when it`s been tough, when you`re injured and you wake up in the morning, you think 'Oh I`ve got to go to training, all the other lads are training, you`ve got to go to the gym`. That makes you stronger and it makes you appreciate it more and try and do everything you can to keep fit and keep on the pitch.'
Following game time out with Bournemouth last season as he built his way back to full fitness, he has only started two games for Arsenal so far this season - Doncaster Rovers and BATE Borisov - but Wilshere feels he's now getting back to his best with each passing week.
'I always hear the boss say it is my first five-metre burst, when I receive the ball and to get away from defenders and I feel that`s getting better and better each day. I feel like the way to improve that is in games when you`re playing against opposition that want to win and want to win the ball back and you have to be able to keep the ball.'
'That`s coming back and my fitness levels, if I`m honest, are probably the best they`ve ever been. I look at my numbers after the game and I`ve been out for four months and I`m not the one who hasn`t run the most. Now don`t get me wrong, I don`t run the most, we`ve got a lot of players that do that, but my numbers are good so I`m happy.'