2 – Jack Wilshere
I must admit, there’s a slight bit of bias here but I don’t think you can ignore the season Jack has put in for us, especially after the challenges he’s had to overcome.
Seeing Wilshere line up for Bournemouth last season filled a lot of Arsenal fans with a real mixture of emotions. On the one hand, happy for the guy. On the other, wishing he was pulling on the red and white jersey each week.
But after another scare through injury, Wilshere kicked off the campaign as an understudy to the likes of Aaron Ramsey and Mesut Ozil, constantly failing to make the grade for the important games.
His real chance came in the Europa League where, at 26 years of age, he stood as one of the more experienced members of the squad as they took on a range of sub-standard opposition.
With more game time came more confidence and a series of injury setbacks to the likes of Ramsey and Xhaka provided him with an opportunity to pick up more Premier League minutes ahead of this summers World Cup.
Whilst talk has surrounded whether he should be on the plane or not, Gareth Southgate has stayed silent on the midfielders chances of playing a part, which haven’t been helped having missed this weeks friendlies due to a knock.
His contract situation will more than likely run down until the final days of the season but I have no doubts about him signing a long-term deal having proved his fitness once again.
Which leads me nicely back into his activity ON the pitch, where quite frankly he’s been a breath of fresh air when linking up with his fellow number 10, Mesut Ozil.
Wilshere has a rare ability to read the game five passes ahead of everyone else, meaning he’s already aware of the runs Lacazette/Aubameyang are about to make.
On top of that, I believe his loan move to Bournemouth was only a good thing as it gave him a chance to be on the other end of things, sitting and defending against some of the PL’s big hitters.
That will have only improved his insight into how teams have to set up when trying to stop teams like Arsenal, who dominate the ball but often have to find a way around ten players in order to get it in the back of the net!