The lowdown: Prodigal son returns
Signed from the Luton Town academy as a fledgling youngster, the former England star came through the ranks in north London in impressive style and went on to become a star performer under Arsene Wenger.
The 30-year-old spent time on loan at Bolton and Bournemouth during his time with the Gunners, amassing 197 outings for his boyhood club before moving onto pastures new in 2018 following numerous battles with injury.
Since then, Wilshere has spent mixed spells at West Ham, Bournemouth and more recently Danish side Aarhus GF before calling time on his professional career, promptly being appointed as head coach of the Arsenal under-18s earlier this week.
The latest: ‘So invaluable’
Speaking to Football Insider, ex-Leeds United marksman Whelan suggested that the role was perfectly suited for Wilshere’s next step.
The BBC Radio show host said: “I think we knew that his career had come to a halt. He tried different clubs abroad and at home, but it didn’t work out for him.
“I think he’s doing the right thing now by going into the coaching aspect of things and doing so very early on. He’s got real longevity in this side of the game, for me.
“He knows Arsenal, he’s come through the ranks – and whatever advice he offers, people will listen to him because he was a decent player. He was struck down by injury after injury, but his knowledge of the game will still be there.
“His experience will be so invaluable for young players who can look to someone like Wilshere and take pointers from the good and the bad side of the game that he has experienced.”
Can Wilshere become a future Arsenal manager?
The verdict: Ideal role model
Fresh out of playing at an elite level, the current crop of Arsenal youngsters would be wise to cling to every word of the 34-cap former England midfielder.
A winner of the Community Shield and two FA Cups during his time with the Gunners, Wilshere boasts a wealth of knowledge, while also facing hardship when it comes to dealing with the adversity of injuries in particular.
Working in the same academy which saw him burst onto the scene as a teenager, the one-time Emirates Stadium idol could be set to play an integral part in the emergence of the next Eddie Nketiah, Bukayo Saka or Charlie Patino in the years to come.
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