It’s been an ongoing story since the end of the 2017/18 season but yesterday, Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere officially announced that he would be parting ways with the Gunners when his contract expires at the end of June.
After initially breaking into the team as a 16-year-old under the guidance of long-term boss Arsene Wenger, Wilshere has never been shy about his deep-rooted love for the North London outfit, making his next step all the more intriguing.
For all the talk of persistent injury problems, last term saw him take part in more than 30 games across all competitions, suggesting that he will be able to play an active role throughout the 2018/19 campaign for whoever he decides to join in the next week or so.
Thanks in large part to the fantastic relationship Roy Hodgson shared with the 26-year-old when the pair worked together with England, Wilshere’s name has been linked with Crystal Palace from the moment it became clear that an Arsenal exit was on the cards. He will have plenty of other potential suitors this summer, (West Ham chief amongst them) but for now, it feels as though Palace are well in the race to secure his signature.
Given the fact that Jack has already been a part of the professional game for a decade, it’s easy to assume that he’s now over the hill. In reality, any player in his mid-20s, particularly one with the natural talent Wilshere possesses, has to be of serious interest to a club like Palace.
Whilst I can’t have anything close to the understanding Arsenal fans will have of his personality, it has always seemed to me from the outside looking in, as though Wilshere is a player who thrives on the love and backing of his supporters; something any Palace player can count on in they show a battling spirit on the pitch from week to week.
We arguably won’t “officially” know where the Arsenal man is heading for a few days yet but I’ll happily admit to wanting him at Selhurst Park if there is a deal to be done.