It had been rumoured that Jack Wilshere could be back for the game against Middlesbrough on Sunday.
After only just returning to first team training at the end of last week, that always did seem unlikely.
Speaking to the media after Arsenal’s FA Cup win, Arsene Wenger confirmed that the midfielder needs just one more week in training meaning that he is set to return against Crystal Palace, barring any setbacks, of course.
He’s two weeks ahead of schedule. I had a hesitation to put him on the bench today but I thought I wanted him to have one more week of training at least.
Wilshere has been out since he was on the receiving end of a dangerous (and nasty) tackle by Manchester United’s Paddy McNair that went unpunished by the referee.
Needing surgery to correct the problem that has kept him sidelined since the end of November, should he return against Palace it will be almost three months to the day since he was injured.
It’s interesting to ponder, had Arsenal not had so many players back from injury already, if Wenger would have been tempted to put Jack on the bench for the game against Middlesbrough.
Thankfully, it was a call he didn’t have to make.