Jack Wilshere needs a rest, Arsène Wenger warns The FA

Arsenal manager says young midfielder is in danger of burning out if he is not given a rest this summer

By Tom Clarke
arsene wenger
Arsène Wenger has stressed the imporance of a summer break for players Photo: Paul Blank

arsene wenger

Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger has fired another warning at Fabio Capello and The FA over Jack Wilshere’s involvement with the England Under-21s this summer.

Wenger said that if Wilshere plays in the European U21 Championships in Denmark this summer, he may not be available for the England qualifiers against Bulgaria and Wales in early September.

The Gunners boss also said that the 19-year-old midfielder would miss the friendly with Holland on 10 August should he play in Denmark.

“If they go to the end of the tournament then I will have to give him a six-week holiday which means he might not be available for the friendly nor the qualifier,” Wenger said. “England have to make the choice there.

“I know that I will respect the player’s holiday period – it’s always important that the players get a good rest,” he added.

Wenger hinted that summer internationals may have an impact on the length of a player’s career. He continued: “Take a player like Ryan Giggs, he is still playing at 37 yet he has never played a major tournament and he has had a good rest every summer.

“I think it has a big impact these days when players are playing a major tournament then coming back and playing in a league like this one where every game is a battle.

“It would be better for him [Wilshere] not to play but we will accept the decision of the FA,” Wenger added.

Meanwhile, the Arsenal manager remains upbeat about the Gunners’ title chances ahead of Sunday’s Premier League clash with Liverpool at the Emirates.

Arsenal are seven points behind leaders Manchester United but have a game in hand, and Wenger is confident his team can take United to the wire.

“It is important for the country that the championship race is still alive,” he said. “We have a good opportunity to reduce the distance between us and Man United and of course we want to take this opportunity.”

Wenger refused to comment on the takeover negotiations between the club and Stan Kroenke, but the Frenchman did confirm that the American tycoon would be attending Sunday’s game.

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