According to The Times, West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini is hopeful that Jack Wilshere will be returning to training in a few weeks, as he works his way back to fitness from a persistent ankle problem. Is there any room in the starting XI for the former Arsenal man though?
Despite having played in the Hammers’ first four matches of the season, the Englishman has gotten just five minutes of football under his belt since December. Pellegrini is hopeful, though, that the midfielder will be fit in March, despite earlier fears that his recurring ankle issue could finish his season.
The 27-year-old has not had a lonely rehabilitation though – he has been joined by the likes of Manuel Lanzini, Winston Reid, Carlos Sanchez and more, as injuries decimate the West Ham squad.
As the treatment room filled up, the London Stadium outfit were pretty much forced into action in the January transfer market as they brought in free-agent Samir Nasri on day one. The Frenchman’s arrival, though, could mean Wilshere’s work is far from done once he returns to match fitness.
Nasri has impressed in attacking-midfield, as has the industrious Robert Snodgrass, so Wilshere must outperform both if he is to become Pellegrini’s main man at the number ten position.
Luckily for the Stevenage-born maestro, he is quite versatile, but he will have to compete with Mr. West Ham himself, Mark Noble for the nod alongside the undroppable Declan Rice at the base of midfield.
Noble is still going strong as he enters his twilight years and his leadership is unparalleled in the Irons ranks – Wilshere will have to perform miracles to oust his compatriot from the starting XI.
It could very well be a while before we see Pellegrini give the former England international an extended run in the lineup.
Injuries eventually cost Wilshere his career at Arsenal and, despite having only arrived in the summer, they may have already cost him a guaranteed starting spot in claret and blue.
Who is West Ham’s worst ever signing? Check out the video below for a pretty strong candidate for the dubious honour…