When Jack Wilshere burst onto the scene as a youngster at the end of the last decade, England fans everywhere believed that a new gem had been discovered.

The rise for Wilshere has been evident, a midfielder who only seems to not excel in front of goal, he is one that can do everything else.

Despite his unbelievable talent, it has not been a rise without its falls in the short career so far of Wilshere. 14 months out of football put to the test as to whether Wilshere could recover and continue to fulfil his bright potential. 

Although injuries have gone some way to stunting the footballing growth of the Arsenal and England midfielder, the past week has also seen him under scrutiny for his decision making.

Starting with last weeks smoking incident and continuing into this week with his comments on the England national team. 

The first incident was plain stupidity - a decision that was his own to make and at his own cost. The second however, seems to be more a case of wrong phrasing, which was made on the spot during a press conference. 

With the FA's pursue of Manchester United's Adnan Januzaj and his potential England eligibility, the hot topic after the youngsters fantastic performance against Sunderland on Saturday, Wilshere was quizzed on the topic, drawing the following comments:

"If you live in England for five years it doesn't make you English."

"The only people who should play for England are English people. If I went to Spain and lived there for five years, I'm not going to play for Spain."

Wilshere later took to social media to emphasise that he wasn't referring directly to Januzaj, but foreign players playing in England on a whole. But it seemed this clarification then opened up a bigger problem for the midfielder. 

Cricketer Kevin Pietersen did not take too kindly to the comments. The South African born England international cited team-mate Andrew Strauss (South Africa also) and double London Olympics gold medallist Mo Farah (Somalia) as examples of sportsmen who had moved to England and later gone on to represent their country, or in Farah's case Great Britain, in their respective sports. 

Wilshere retreated from his earlier comments, claiming his admiration for Pietersen, Farah and fellow England international, Wilfried Zaha (Ivory Coast born).

Which goes to further suggest the thought that Wilshere's point was poorly worded, often the case with on the spot questioning. But does Wilshere have a point, despite the wrong way in which it came across?

For the most part yes, to lesser extents, no. In the specific case of Januzaj, it seems hardly likely that he arrived at Manchester United in 2011 with the dream of one day representing England.

This is the same player who has repeatedly turned down the advances of Belgium to play for their national team, a country he grew up in and one that's national side is in far better shape than that of England, with all suggestions Januzaj will go on to represent Albania in the future, having been born to Kosovar-Albanian parents. 

Terry Butcher, born in Singapore but grew up in Suffolk and John Barnes, a Jamaican born England international who moved to London at the age of 12 are the two biggest non-English born England internationals in recent memory.

But even in the current crop of young English internationals, Raheem Sterling was also born in Jamaican and the previously mentioned Wilfried Zaha born in the Ivory Coast.

It appears Wilshere's comments were made for players who had spent the majority of their footballing education elsewhere, a player whose style wasn't typical of the 'spirited, hard-tackling' Englishman that Wilshere spoke of.

Seemingly backed by his point of saying if he moved to Spain and stayed five years, he would not count himself as Spanish.

Clarified by his comment on Twitter: "My view on football - going to a new country when you're an adult, and because you can get a passport you play for that national team - I disagree."

For players making that move to England at the end of the youth levels, or even in the duration of their career, it seems fair to say that their eligibility for England should be questioned.

However if under current rules they qualify for the opportunity of representing England, and want to attempt to do so, they have every right to. 

The French and German national sides have worked the loophole of eligibility to great rewards, France with players such as Patrick Vieira and Marcel Desailly (Senegal and Ghana respectively), Germany with the likes of Miroslav Klose and Lukas Podolski (both born in Poland).

All four have been mainstays with their national side, showing the success it can bring.

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has defended his midfielder, saying the eligibility discussion could see national sides start to function like club transfers, and it is hard to disagree with the Frenchman. It is arguable that Wilshere's comments will soon result in Fifa clarifying the issue.

But for a national side struggling for young talent, the FA have made a bad move in their reported approach of Januzaj, something that may be the underlining point of Wilshere's argument.

In an age when the FA have been criticised for the lack of production of talented youngsters, poaching a Belgian born Kosovar-Albanian rooted player, who has only been in England two years does not offer great hope in home-grown talent. 

For Wilshere however, a more thought over comment would have saved what has been 24 hours of clarification for the midfielder, adding the pressure on a difficult week for the England international. 

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Topics:
World Cup
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Jack Wilshere