Jack Wilshere: People forget my age when they criticise me
Jack Wilshere believes many football fans forget how young he is when the Arsenal midfielder comes in for criticism
Jack Wilshere believes many football fans forget how young he is when the Arsenal midfielder comes in for criticism.
The 21-year-old first broke into the Gunners’ first team five years ago and aside from some lengthy spells on the sidelines, has been a mainstay of Arsene Wenger’s side.
Wilshere is widely regarded as one of England’s brightest prospects and has naturally found himself under the glare of the media spotlight.
But the midfielder accepts that such attention is now part of the modern game.
“Yes, I do think [people forget my age],” Wilshere told Arsenal.com. “Not just because I’ve been around for a long time, but people hear I’ve got two kids and it’s not often you hear about a 21-year-old with two kids.
“I’ve been in the first team since I was 16 so that’s five years and that’s quite a long time in football terms.
“I made my debut when I was 16 and the aim was to play for England and it came pretty quickly – when I was 18. Then the main thing after that was to keep my place in the Arsenal team week in, week out and I did during that season.
“I then had a frustrating year with injury and it’s tough when you’re out injured, you’ve got to come back. People think that when you’re out injured you don’t do a lot of work but you do, trust me.
“It’s tough but last season I got back into the team, got fit again and had 30-odd games which was nice, and this year I’ve stayed fit so far and that’s the aim for the rest of season.
“I play week in, week out against 31 and 32-year-olds so I think you just have to take that [close scrutiny].
“People are always going to criticise you and judge your performances all the time. They are paid to do that, so you have to concentrate on your own game.”