Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere has praised the club's youngsters after they impressed during their pre-season tour of the Far East, which concluded on Friday.
Wilshere, who broke into Arsenal's first team a couple of season's ago, believes the youngsters will gain a lot from their pre-season experiences and believe they all have a bright future ahead of them.
The Far East tour has given players like Chuba Akpom, Kris Olsson, Gedion Zelalem, Serge Gnabry, Damian Martinez, Thomas Eisfeld and Chuks Aneke a chance to show manager Arsene Wenger what they can do and whether or not they are ready to be promoted to the first team.
The squad returned from the tour on Saturday after winning all four of their games and will now be preparing for the Emirates Cup with takes place this weekend, and Wilshere believes pre-season is vital for the youngsters and he remembers how it feels to be on the brink of the first team.
“I remember when I was their age,” he told Arsenal Player. "It's good to come away and get used to being around the first team and learning from the manager, who is good at bringing young players in and breaking them in slowly.
“They've done well and hopefully they can get in the Emirates Cup squad and really show the home crowd what they can do.”
Wilshere was especially impressed by 16-year-old Zelalem and even admitted that half the time, he doesn't even know what the youngster will produce next.
The 21-year-old midfielder has also been talking about his own pre-season and so far he is delighted to be getting game-time under his belt after recovering from minor ankle surgery.
“I felt better and better every game,” he added. “It's difficult with the conditions. You struggle to catch your breath.
“The performances have got better every game and the opposition have got harder every game so it's good preparation. We've got the Emirates Cup coming up now and then Man City [in Helsinki] and then the season starts so we're going to be flying.
“I'm probably 80 per cent fit. We've got a couple more tests and then we'll be ready.”
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