People who enjoy placing bets on football will tell you that Arsenal’s chances at finishing in the top-four of the Premier League this season are teetering. The Gunners are currently sitting seventh behind the likes of Spurs, Liverpool and Burnley. They’re still very much within striking distance, but they’re going to need to make a move sooner or later.
Wednesday’s scoreless draw at West Ham was discouraging, but the result could’ve been far worse after Arsenal saw a shot from Javier Hernandez in the game’s waning minutes rattle the crossbar before bouncing away. There were still bright spots in the match, however, as Jack Wilshere looked like the Gunners’ best player while making his first Premier League start in nearly 600 days.
While Wilshere played well, and has looked great during the Gunners’ Europa League run, the player admitted after the West Ham match that there has been no new progress on a new deal with Arsenal. Wilshere has had an up-and-down career at Arsenal, which has often been beset by injuries. He spent last season on loan with Bournemouth.
Wilshere’s contract is set to expire in the summer, but Arsene Wenger has told the press that he expects to attempt to negotiate a new deal with the player sometime this month.
When asked about negotiations after the game, Wilshere said, “There’s no update, we’re in the same position we were in two weeks ago. There’s not really a date in the diary. I’ve only read what he [Wenger] has said in the media. At the moment, I’ve just played my first game in the Premier League.”
Wilshere, 25, has bagged six goals in 111 career appearances in an Arsenal shirt in all competitions. He has picked up a goal and an assist in five appearances in the Europa League thus far this season.
While the uncertainty surrounding his own contract situation must be a distraction, Wilshere said that his primary focus is playing the best football he possibly can.
“I’m concentrating on staying fit and staying in the team,” Wilshere said. “That will look after itself and, when it’s the right time, I’m sure the boss will pull me so we can have a chat. There’s another game on Saturday [against Newcastle], and we’ll see what the boss does then. At the moment, that’s all I’m focused on.”
Wilshere admitted that there is a noticeable difference in the playing styles between the Premier League and the Europa League.
“It’s different playing in the Premier League compared to the Europa League. You don’t get that much time on the ball.”