Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has written in his blog for the Daily Mail that Everton midfielder Ross Barkley has more to offer than Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere.
Barkley has profited from the Arsenal star’s absence from the England national team over the past week, impressing for Roy Hodgson’s side and showing his maturity on the big stage.
Wilshere’s troubles with injuries have hindered his progress in recent years, throwing up the opportunity for another name to stake their claim for a regular spot on the international scene.
Writing in his blog for the Daily Mail, Carragher explained that Barkley has proven more than capable of holding his own in England colours, and claimed the Evertonian has more tools at his disposal than Wilshere.
“Hodgson’s first choice midfield in qualifying has been Jack Wilshere playing in behind Jordan Henderson and Fabian Delph, two players who provide the fantastic energy that England will need next summer. But all three are currently injured, which gives Barkley his chance,” Carragher stated.
“For years we have been waiting for Wilshere to be that creative spark and player to watch, but Barkley, I feel, has more in terms of his ability to strike from outside the box and to ride challenges much better because of his size and presence.”
Barkley has always had the physical attributes and the skill to beat opponents, but where he has improved immensely this season is with his decision-making and impact in the final third.
He is undoubtedly one of England’s finest attacking midfielders of recent years, and should he manage to stay injury free, then there are no limits to just how effective he can be.
Wilshere, however, has long been thought of as England’s great hope as a roaming midfielder, but such responsibility and expectation is arguably unfair considering his attributes.
The Arsenal man may be an excellent dribbler, but he’s also able to contribute to the defensive side and there is a case to be had that he’s arguably better in a deep-lying playmaker role.