England manager Roy Hodgson named a final 23 man squad for the Euros, including Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere and Liverpool forward Daniel Sturridge, both of whom have seen very little of the pitch due to injuries the past season.
While Daniel Sturridge did manage to find some game time, Wilshere made just one league start, on the last day of the season, having missed last year’s entire campaign due to an ankle injury.
As quoted by ESPN, the former England, and Newcastle Striker was of the opinion that England have gone again for ‘reputation’ over ‘fitness and form’ citing the inclusion of the two injury prone stars as well as Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson, who only recently recovered from an injury. The omission of Danny Drinkwater inspite of a marvelous campaign with champions Leicester City last season seems to be an incorrect move according to Shearer, who hopes that Hodgson does not regret his decision over leaving the Leicester star out.
Shearer does not seem impressed by Wilshere’s performances in the pre-tournament friendlies either. While Jordan Henderson and Daniel Sturridge have in some capacity featured for their team this season, it is Jack Wilshere’s lack of playing time on the field that has triggered a series of discussions, responses and subsequently, a generic disapproval of his inclusion in the squad by the England fans.
The opinion on the matter ,however, does not seem unanimous, in so far as the Arsenal midfielder has divided opinion in the football world about his technical gift and qualities and whether these are enough to get him a place in the Euro’s. several voices from within the world of football, have in fact backed Wilshere to go to France for the Euros. Wilshere’s Arsenal team-mate and Welsh international Aaron Ramsey has strongly favored the idea that Wilshere be included in the England squad.
In his interview with the Skysports, Ramsey went on to claim that Wilshere could possibly be on of England’s ‘main player’ in the tournament. Paul Merson in his column for sky sports too has previously suggested that Hodgson must select the 24-year-old if he is fit, considering his qualities.
The discussion revolving around Wilshere’s inclusion for this Euros is one that is not linked so much with his ability as much as it is linked with whether the Arsenal no.10 has done enough this calendar year to be part of the tournament; whether he ‘deserves’ to be picked up, and specifically, over premier league winner Danny Drinkwater.
There are ample opinions who believe that Wilshere is in fact that good; that Hodgson would not leave him out if he is fit. Whether Wilshere will be able to deliver as a deep lying ball distributor; a role that Roy Hodgson so unconditionally seems to trust him with is yet to be seen.
There is no doubt however that no other England squad member will be under more pressure to perform than Jack Wilshere, especially if he is to prove Shearer wrong in the latter’s assessment.