Former England forward Rodney Marsh says Jack Wilshere does not possess the ‘exceptional’ talent required to be an Arsenal and England great.
Marsh’s comments come following reports that Serie A champions Juventus are monitoring the 22-year-old, but the ex-Manchester City man is baffled as to why a club of that stature would be chasing his signature.
‘I just don’t see him as being the exceptional player people say he is and that is he going to be the anchor of Arsenal and England’s midfield. I just don’t see that,’ he told talkSPORT.
‘The reason I say that is there was a massive internet article about Juventus wanting him. He had that terrible injury that went on and on, but I look at him in the last couple of years for England and Arsenal and the game seems to go on around him a little bit.’
After bursting onto the scene with both Arsenal and England during the 2010-11 campaign, aged 18, Wilshere has endured on-going fitness problems over the past three seasons, including a stress fracture in his ankle which saw miss the whole of 2011-12.
His progress hampered as a result, the 20-times capped international featured in Arsenal’s comfortable 3-0 Community Shield win over Manchester City on Sunday, but Marsh was unimpressed with his performance.
‘Ramsey gets a lot of the ball, Arteta gets a lot of the ball, as does Cazorla,’ he said. ‘I thought he [Wilshere] was very, very average.’
Having previously encountered criticism from Tony Adams and Paul Scholes over the past six months, Wilshere is facing a crucial season at the Emirates, with his long-time label as “England’s future talisman” at stake if he again fails to live up to his undoubted potential.