After an encouraging display against Everton last time out, Jack Wilshere started and played 75 minutes for Bournemouth during their 2-2 draw against Walter Mazzari’s Watford side.
The headlines will mainly be focused on his failure to finish a clear goalscoring opportunity at the far post, especially with the goal gaping, but he managed to hit the post and watched with agony as it trickled out of play shortly afterwards.
Being deployed as the number ten, directly behind striker Callum Wilson, had both its positives and negatives throughout.
Given his lack of match practice, it’d be naive to suggest Wilshere would show vast improvement in a matter of weeks. There have been flashes of individual brilliance but equally, clear signs of a talented player who has been unable to finish a full 90 for two full years.
He was given his second booking of the season for a silly, needless challenge after 20 minutes whilst also rattling the woodwork once more before being replaced in the latter stages by Dan Gosling.
His first-touch let him down upon occasion, he seemed lazy at times when there were gaps in the middle of Watford’s backline which he could’ve exploited with a trademark marauding run forward into. With that being said, you can also argue he’s tentative to avoid situations where he draws opponents into committing fouls on him, as is the injury sensitivity that needs to be taken into account.
If this loan is to be as successful as it has potential to be, Wilshere needs to continue in the same vein that he has started life on the south Coast whilst importantly remaining match-fit.