Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere is desperate to play a part in this weekend's Premier League clash with Crystal Palace, but he's got a battle on his hands to persuade Gunners boss Arsene Wenger its worth the risk.
Wilshere has been out of action for almost three months after suffering serious ankle ligament damage under a challenge from Manchester United defender Paddy McNair, the latest in a long line of injury problems for the England international.
After extensive rehabilitation the 23-year-old has been back in full training for 10 days, with the Evening Standard reporting he's declared himself fit to feature at Selhurst Park on Saturday.
Wenger told him no last weekend
Wilshere had hoped to be at least included in the squad for last weekend's FA Cup clash with Middlesbrough, but despite looking sharp in training Wenger decided to be cautious and leave him out altogether rather than risk hampering his comeback.
Wenger will struggle to keep Wilshere on a leash again this weekend though, with a place on the bench looking the most likely for a scenario for a player desperate to prove his worth and finish this season on a high.
Arsenal still without Ramsey
Wilshere is the only long-term absentee that Wenger can expect to call upon before February, with Aaron Ramsey and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain both out for at least the next couple of week.
Ramsey in particular is a concern for Gunners medical staff, suffering another hamstring injury against Leicester City last week under no pressure from an opponent as he attempted to spring in midfield.
Oxlade-Chamberlain is closer than Ramsey to returning, but is still nursing a groin problem that has ruled out him out of action in 2015.
The next injury crisis always seems to be just round the corner for Wenger, so it will be completely understandable if Wilshere is given a reduced role for the next weeks to ease him back with so many important matches on the horizon.
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