Jack Wilshere is returning to Arsenal as an academy coach – four years after leaving his boyhood club. The former England international announced his retirement from professional football last week following a career that was heavily impacted by injury.
And Wilshere has finalised a deal to return to the Emirates as he starts his coaching career, with the 30-year-old to work with the club’s Under-18s.
The ex-West Ham midfielder is said to be delighted with his new role at Arsenal, the club he holds such a strong affinity with after rising through the ranks to become a fans favourite.
The Gunners are yet to confirm Wilshere’s return, but sources insist an agreement is in place for the former Premier League star to rejoin.
Speaking last week, Wilshere’s former manager Arsene Wenger said: ‘’Well for me it’s a sad moment because Jack is an exceptional football player.
‘He was brave, he was talented, he wasn’t scared of anybody. Which is why we thought he could start at a very young age. Straight away he showed he had the ability to be a main player.’
He played 288 club games — 197 for Arsenal — and won 34 England caps, but injury denied him the chance to truly fulfil his great potential.
Wilshere became Arsenal’s youngest league debutant in 2008 aged just 16 and was 19 when he produced his most famous performance — a man-of-the-match display against Barcelona in 2011.
But successive injuries, often to his ankles, hampered his efforts to live up to the hype.
He left Arsenal in 2018 and tried to recapture former glories at West Ham, Bournemouth and Aarhus.