The first time I saw him play was in the Emirates Cup in 2008 and although he was only 16 he didn't look out of place at all among the stars of the Arsenal first team. The hope was that we might get to see some of him in the first team that season but it never really happened. When he wasn't getting his game last season he went out on loan to Bolton for the second half of the season. Some people think that he learned how to look after himself at Bolton and how to put himself about too but he was able to do that when he played in the Emirates Cup almost two years earlier.
At the moment he's still finding his feet in the first team but there's no doubt that he brings an extra dimension to the Arsenal team when he plays. Cesc Fabregas says that Wilshere is a better player than he was at that age and it's hard to argue with a statement like that. Exactly how good he will become is anybody's guess but he has all the right attributes to become a true Arsenal legend.
He may not have scored too many goals in his short Arsenal career yet but I have no doubt about his ability to score goals of the highest calibre. Anybody who has seen the goal he scored for the Arsenal youth team against West Ham's youths a couple of years ago will realise exactly how good his finishing can be. That goal reminded me of Denis Bergkamp and there can be no higher praise for a player than comparing him to the Iceman.
I'm sure the boss considered loaning him out again this season and there were plenty of teams interested in taking him on loan. He probably only stayed at the club because Cesc was still recovering from his World Cup exploits and Aaron Ramsey still had a long way to go to recover from his broken leg. He got his chance early this season and he has grabbed it with both hands. In a short space of time he has made himself look almost indispensable to the team and I am certainly looking forward to his return to action after his three game suspension. Arsenal are lucky to have such a super young talent at the club and he looks like he will be a huge part of their future.
In other news my son told me he read an article yesterday in which Alex Song said that he changed his hairstyle so that it would be easier for his wife to see him on the pitch. Apparently she complained that too many players had dreadlocks and it was difficult to see him on the pitch, so he dyed his hair blonde. I'm no expert, but I do like reggae and surely the style sported by Song was in fact braids and not dreadlocks but whatever it was it was better than his current "pint of Guinness" look.
I read a little bit about him and I was surprised to read that he is one of 28 children in his family. His father died when he was very young and his cousin Rigobert Song was apparently a father figure to him. I know the two of them have played together for Cameroon but I had always thought that Rigobert was his uncle. It was also interesting to read that he married at 18 and he has two young children at the tender age of 23 himself. It's always been thought that managers like to see their players settled at a young age as it keeps them out of trouble but 18 is a very young age to get married.
Arsenal play their next Champions League match tomorrow night when they travel to play Shakhtar Donetsk. After we beat them 5-1 at The Emirates a few weeks ago I'm sure they will be anxious to get some revenge. A win for them would almost guarantee that they qualify for the knock out stages of the competition along with Arsenal and the chances are that Arsenal will rest a few players for that game. I'll preview that game tomorrow when we will probably have a better idea of what players travel and what players don't.
With the weekend's games ending last night the Fantasy football is now up to date and I'm delighted to say that my team has continued it's climb up the rankings. Thanks to five goals on Sunday and Monday from Kevin Nolan, Charlie Adam and Luke Varney my team managed 60 points for the week and to just outside the top 100,000 teams overall. I'm now up to 59th place in the league I'm running in conjunction with 11Gunners and crucially I'm only three points off my goal of the top 50 in that league.
That may not sound like it's a massive target but with 734 teams in the league it's not exactly an easy target either. The league itself is ranked 66th out of over 213,000 leagues which is an achievement that I'm very proud of too. Here's a look at how the top 10 in the league stand.
TEAM MANAGER WEEK 10 OVERALL
|3||Laverick 'N' Sons||Stephen Laverick||44||601|
|4||Izadie F.C||nazrul nazri||88||587|
|5||In Arsene We Trust||Sam Griffiths||42||584|
|7||Sura FC||Anand Wenger||66||580|
|8||outlawz FC||beck outlawz||60||578|
|10||DUO's Gunnerz||David Okere||55||575|
That's the lot for today.
See You Tomorrow.