Per Mertesacker was happy to see Jack Wilshere make his first start for Arsenal in over year on Wednesday, with the Gunners enjoying a 1-0 win over Doncaster Rovers in the Carabao Cup.

Wilshere was given his first start for Arsenal in 493 days and even played 90 minutes in Arsenal’s third round victory. He was one of the better performers on the night, in my opinion, and club captain Per Mertesacker was happy to see him back.

“It was very good to have him back out there. You can see that he’s getting more comfortable with his position now,” Mertesacker told Arsenal Player. “He’s brave now and he trusts his body. That’s the most important thing, that he’s capable of playing 90 minutes.

“He will just grow with that and he was vocal as well, which was important for us, especially at the end. He kept the ball well in tight situations and to come out of that is vintage Jack. That’s what we want to see from him in the future here at Arsenal.”

Wilshere’s Arsenal future was in considerable doubt during the summer. While recovering from an injury he picked up while on loan at Bournemouth, he was subject to interest from several clubs and Arsenal seemed open to selling him.

However, things are now looking a bit brighter for the 25-year-old. He made his first Arsenal appearance in over a year when he came off the bench against Cologne in the Europa League. He then played 90 minutes against Doncaster, which is a major step forward on the road back to full fitness.

In my opinion, the longer he can stay fit and the more he impresses in these cup games, the greater chance Wilshere will have of earning a new contract and playing in the Premier League again.