Jack Wilshere boost for Gunners

Arsenal midfielder Jack WilshereArsenal will receive a major boost next week when Jack Wilshere starts training with a football again. The England midfielder, 20, has not played for 13 months owing to ankle, foot and knee injuries. But he is close to completing a fitness regime designed to prepare him for full training and first-team football.

Wilshere is set to start another specially designed programme which will for the first time include extensive ball work, and Arsenal hope he will return to first-team action by the end of next month.  The news will be welcomed by manager Arsene Wenger, who has cited Wilshere’s pending return as one reason why he did not sign a central midfielder despite the loss of Alex Song to Barcelona.

Arsenal will be further lifted by the pending return of Bacary Sagna, 29, four months after he broke his leg against Norwich. The France right back is expected to resume full training by the end of the month.

Wenger made three major  signings this summer in Santi Cazorla, Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud at an outlay of around £40million, but that expenditure has been offset by the key departures of Robin van Persie and Song, who between them have allowed the club to recoup £39m.