Laura Woods defended West Ham midfielder Jack Wilshere after an article in the Daily Mail suggested he may not get back to his best.
The talkSPORT presenter read a snippet from Tom Farmery’s article on the Hammers midfielder and highlighted another article in the Daily Mail on Aston Villa star Jack Grealish, and questioned why the media felt the need to jump on the back of young players.
Woods then acknowledged that Wilshere may not be considered young anymore, he’s 27-years-old, before pointing out that it isn’t exactly his fault that injuries have hindered his career.
“Woeful Wilshere looks so off the pace, it’s hard to see him getting back on track,” said Woods on talkSPORT (09:21 am, Monday, August 19th).
“Tom Farmery describes the amount of injuries he has had, amount of games he has missed, and that he doesn’t think he’ll get back to his best.
“There’s a piece next to it, Adam Shergold, he talks about Grealish’s horror run, Jack Grealish has lost 20 consecutive Premier League games the most ever, the anger I feel when I read something like this, is I just wonder why, why are we so quick to jump on the back of young players? Whether or not you think Jack Grealish is young, sorry Jack Wilshere.
“Jack Wilshere has struggled with injuries throughout his career and he didn’t want those injuries, he was a brilliant young player, he has had real struggles to get back to fitness and if he is not getting back to fitness, it’s not necessarily his own fault.
“It’s not like he’s not allowing himself not to get back to fitness.”
Woods was spot-on with the way she defended Wilshere, as the Hammers midfielder is clearly trying his best. The Daily Mail’s article focuses on the fact that Manuel Pellegrini has opted to bench the midfielder before the 60th-minute mark in both of the club’s opening league games, to back up its point that Wilshere may never fufill the expectations the club had when they signed him last summer. However, it seems incredibly harsh to question Wilshere at this point, as we’re only two leagues games into the new season. The 27-year-old was always going to take time to get back to his best, after all, he managed to play only 389 minutes across eight outings last season (Source: Transfermarkt). Wilshere did struggle against Brighton on Saturday, as he managed to only touch the ball 15 times, as per WhoScored, but he should be treated like a work in progress. With a few more games under his belt, the 27-year-old may be able to showcase his skillset a bit more, and it’s worth remembering he did impress during pre-season, to a point where fans were even gushing about him on social media when playing Newcastle United.