Charlie Nicholas believes that Jack Wilshere has more technical ability than Granit Xhaka and could still be a useful player for Arsenal.
Wilshere played 90 minutes for Arsenal for the first time in nearly three years during the 1-0 win over Doncaster in the Carabao Cup third round. With the midfielder back and playing decently well in the red and white Arsenal, some are wondering if he’s worth keeping around as a squad player.
One of those people is Charlie Nicholas, who feels that even if Wilshere never returns to his old level, he still has more technical ability than Granit Xhaka, Mohamed Elneny and Francis Coquelin.
“None of us, in all honesty, think he can get back to where he was four or five years ago because the injuries have been so severe, but if he can get close to that then he’s still worth keeping,” Nicholas told Sky Sports via the Evening Standard.
“Is he a better footballer than Granit Xhaka? Yes. He’s certainly better than Mohamed Elneny and Francis Coquelin, and things are starting to fall in place for him where he’s going to get opportunities. Put it this way, I’d much rather Wilshere was on the bench than Elneny or Coquelin.”
Besides Nicholas’ apparent dislike of Xhaka, Wilshere probably would offer more to the first team than Elneny and Coquelin, at least from an attacking perspective. The 25-year-old’s attacking qualities have rarely been in doubt. Fitness has always been his biggest issue and likely always will be, I feel.
However, Elneny and Coquelin do bring qualities to the squad that Wilshere does not, and shouldn’t be dismissed just because they aren’t as easy on the eye. Their defensive qualities are useful, I feel.
Wilshere’s next outing for Arsenal will likely be on Thursday, in my opinion, when Arsenal travel to Belarus to play BATE Borisov in the Europa League.