Jack Wilshere is flourishing in a deeper midfield role

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England maintained their fantastic start in the European Championship qualifiers with a 3-1 win over Slovenia.

The Three Lions responded to going a goal down after Jordan Henderson headed into his own net almost instantaneously with a Wayne Rooney penalty.

Danny Welbeck scored two goals to give England a 3-1 lead on the night and continue his top form as England’s number 9.

It was a day of many headlines for England; Rooney receiving his 100th cap and scoring; Welbeck continuing his goalscoring form. However, Jack Wilshere takes my headline with another man of the match performance for the national team.

He has continued to operate as the deep lying playmaker at the base of the diamond, dictating the play through his excellent passing. Wilshere delivered a disciplined performance and Henderson was responsible for the box-to-box role using his high energy levels.

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Can Wilshere be Arsenal’s holding midfielder?

The holding midfield role has been an increasing issue for Arsenal and is much talked about in the media. This can be Wilshere’s way to nail down his first team place for club and country for years to come.

It is not so strange for technical players to be used in this role as many top teams have operated with a deep lying playmaker alongside a physical box-to-box player. Wilshere has proven he can excel in deep areas and with more games can dictate matches.

Arsenal have had issues with the discipline of the side, with Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey being allowed too much freedom to go forward this season. Neither player has taken defensive responsibility when required as they have had Mathieu Flamini operating behind them.

However, both players have proven they can be disciplined at other points in their career. Wilshere has shown this side to his game more recently with England, while Ramsey performed a disciplined box-to-box role for Arsenal last season.

With Wilshere and Ramsey in the heart of their midfield in disciplined roles, Arsenal can have the answer to their problems. They have enough creativity and pace to hurt teams without allowing these two players such freedom.

Playing these two in these roles also allows Arsene Wenger to drop Flamini who has shown he simply is not at the standard of Arsenal. Mikel Arteta has had injury concerns this season and has been caught out against top teams in the past.

After the last international break Wenger felt Wilshere was wasted in the deeper role, according to The Guardian.

“I believe he is more a guy who you want to get close to the final third.

"To keep him deep you take a big part of his efficiency away. He is a guy who likes to penetrate when there is many people, he can provoke free-kicks, he can create openings.

"It would be detrimental to his strengths in a position that is not his strength.”

With another fine deep performance for Wilshere, Wenger could have changed his mind over the youngster's position. Wenger has other players who have proven quality in the final third in his squad to allow Wilshere to flourish in a deeper role.

Wenger has consistently changed his mind on where he feels Wilshere should play and could make another U-turn. Arsenal face Manchester United next in the Premier League and the Gunners boss might have found an answer to his holding midfield concerns.

Jack Wilshere
England Football
Arsene Wenger
Premier League

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