Jack Wilshere says Charlie Patino is definitely one for the future at Arsenal, but he pushes back against the ‘next Wilshere’ tag.

Charlie Patino with the Arsenal u21s (Photo via Charlie Patino on Twitter)
Charlie Patino with the Arsenal u21s (Photo via Charlie Patino on Twitter)

As everyone will be well aware by now, Jack Wilshere is back training and helping out at Arsenal for a couple of months as he builds his fitness to secure the next move in his playing career.

Wilshere told the media this week that he’s going to provide some coaching for the Arsenal u23s while he’s around, which has people talking about his potential influence on Charlie Patino.

Like Wilshere, Patino is a talented left-footed Arsenal midfielder who has come through the club’s academy with excellent close control and a strong passing range. It’s rather inevitable people draw some comparisons between the two.

Wilshere admits he’s been impressed by what he’s seen from the 18-year-old.

“I know him. I’ve seen him play and he’s a good player,” Wilshere said. “He’s obviously really young still and got a lot of developing to do but he’s definitely one who everyone at the training ground is talking about.

“The first-team players know who he is and he is a good player and one for the future for sure.”

The former Arsenal midfielder also understands why people draw comparisons between himself and Patino, but he believes people should judge the teenager on his own merits.

“Yes, there are some similarities,” Wilshere admits. “There are quite a few but he is a different player as well and I think it is important people see him for who he is rather than say: ‘oh he is the next Jack Wilshere’.

“He has certainly got some qualities I didn’t have and there are things he needs to work on but he is going to make a name for himself in the future.”

One thing that Arsenal fans do seem to be forgetting is that Patino needs to take this journey at his own pace.

He’s making himself a starter with the u23s, he’s breaking into the England u19s, he’s playing with the first team in training and occasional friendlies. These are all positive milestones.

Patino doesn’t need to be starting against Palace on Monday to be making progress. That will come.