Mikel Arteta confirms the club are in conversations with Jack Wilshere, but plays down any talk of the midfielder getting a playing contract.

DERBY, ENGLAND - JANUARY 19: Jack Wilshere of AFC Bournemouth looks on during the warm up prior to during the Sky Bet Championship match between Derby County and AFC Bournemouth at Pride Park Stadium on January 19, 2021 in Derby, England. Sporting stadiums around the UK remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)
DERBY, ENGLAND: Jack Wilshere of AFC Bournemouth looks on during the warm-up prior to during the Sky Bet Championship match between Derby County and AFC Bournemouth at Pride Park Stadium on January 19, 2021. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

The story involving Jack Wilshere, Mikel Arteta, and Arsenal has been steadily growing over the last couple of weeks.

It started with Wilshere speaking out on his desire to find a new club, and admin issues ruining his plans to join Como in Italy.

Arteta then told a press conference that Arsenal’s doors were always open to Wilshere, who is “loved by everyone [at the club]”.

Wilshere responded to the comments by admitting they were nice to hear, and he was sure he’d be having a conversation with someone at Arsenal in the coming days.

Arteta now claims those conversations are ongoing.

“We are in conversations with Jack to understand as well what he needs, what he’s looking for,” Arteta said on Thursday.

“He’s a person and a player who has huge admiration from everyone. We are willing to help him as much as we can. He knows that.”

As for the suggestion that Wilshere could even get a contract to play for Arsenal again, Arteta added: “I wouldn’t take it that far.”

That’s not a hugely surprising response.

Even if there is a small chance Wilshere could end up playing for Arsenal again, there’s no point getting anyone’s hopes up when it’s still so unlikely at this stage.

Arsenal are also in the midst of refreshing and rebuilding the midfield, with the likes of Lokonga, Odegaard, and Smith Rowe backed up by academy talents like Azeez and Patino.

So re-signing Wilshere would feel like going against that new policy.

But if the club can help Wilshere get fit, help him get competitive, have him around those young midfielders to help them in return, that sounds like a good thing for all involved.

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