Jack Wilshere set to leave Arsenal

Jack Wilshere says he will leave Arsenal when his contract expires on 30 June.

The England international came through the Gunners’ youth system before making his debut in 2008.  Despite an injury-plagued career to date, Wilshere has made 197 first team appearances for the club.

His future at Arsenal had been in doubt following the appointment of new manager Unai Emery earlier this summer.

Wilshere spent the 2016-17 season on loan at fellow Premier League side Bournemouth in an attempt to get his fitness levels back up and due to the amount of competition Arsenal had in centre midfield that season.

It is not known whether Wilshere’s future club will be in the Premier League or abroad, but the 26-year-old confirmed on Instagram today that he will be leaving Arsenal at the end of this month.  He said:

“I felt that I was ultimately left with little choice but to make the decision that I have due to purely footballing reasons.

“Such was my desire to stay that I had in fact recently agreed to sign a financially reduced contract in order to commit my future to the club.

“My intention throughout these discussions has always been to remain an Arsenal player. I have been on the books at Arsenal for 17 years and have always felt part of the fabric of the club.

“Following my meeting with the new manager I was made aware that although the reduced contract offer remained, it was made clear to me that my playing time would be significantly reduced should I decide to stay.

“I am sure everyone can understand that at this point in my life and career I need to be playing first-team football and following my meeting with Mr Emery I came away feeling that it would be very difficult for me to do so at Arsenal.

“Given this, I feel I have no option but to pursue other opportunities in order to progress my career on the pitch.”

Jack Wilshere had been in talks with Arsenal over a new contract for a number of months but nothing materialised.  Perhaps the departure of Arsene Wenger played a big role in his decision to leave this summer.

The central midfielder will depart the Emirares Stadium having won the FA Cup with the North London club in both 2014 and 2015.