In Here Is The City's player ratings for Arsenal's 2-1 victory over Aston Villa at Villa Park on Monday, January 13, no player received a higher mark than Gunners academy product Jack Wilshere, who played central midfield alongside Mathieu Flamini, in a deeper role than what he is accustomed to.
Wilshere traditionally revels in an attacking midfield position and, during Mesut Ozil's absence recently, rose to the fore to provide his fellow Guns with ample creativity. Against Villa, in a more withdrawn position, he was just as influential to the outcome of the match, received the man of the match award and attracted commendation from former Tottenham Hotspur striker and current Match of the Day anchor Gary Lineker.
He's a delightful footballer is @JackWilshere . Sublime finish followed by a terrific pass for Giroud.— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) January 13, 2014
Wilshere played a part in both Arsenal goals. In the first half he latched on to a perfectly weighted Nacho Monreal assist to guide the ball into the net and then, 59 seconds later, he played provider by assisting Olivier Giroud for the second and, ultimately vital goal.
Elsewhere on the pitch, Wilshere attempted one tackle, cleared the ball on one occasion and completed three of his six dribbling attempts. He was also successful with 60 of his 70 passes to return an 86% passing accuracy statistic.
Prior to the match, Wilshere tweeted about the importance of Arsenal's game against Villa due to the other results at the top of the Premier League - Manchester City slayed Newcastle United, while Chelsea beat Hull City.
Unfazed by the pressure, the young Englishman led the team to a much-needed victory.
image: © Ronnie Macdonald