It seems like an age ago that Jack Wilshere burst onto the scene at Arsenal, with his stunning, yet still dogged, performances for the Gunners drawing comparisons with Barcelona greats Xavi and Andrés Iniesta. Whilst not everyone was a great admirer of the midfielder – see Pep Guardiola – in England, we believe that he was going to be the next big thing for club and country. The man who would step up to fill the boots of the aging Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard and Paul Scholes.
However, it’s fair to say that things never went to plan for Wilshere, and his demise from a young prodigy to the treatment table is a sad story for those who have followed his career since those early days at the Emirates. Back then, it would have been unimaginable for Wilshere to be a free agent at just 28, when he should be in his prime, but, after mutually terminating his contract with West Ham back in October, that’s the situation the midfielder finds himself in, and unfortunately, that’s the harsh reality of the professional game.
But, as the January transfer window opens once again, Wilshere will be hoping that a club swoops in for his signature, and, if you look at the online betting market, there are some very interesting clubs in the running. So, read on as we take a look at some possible destinations for the 28-year-old.
Arsenal – 9/5*
Wilshere spent 10 years at the North London club, and, according to the latest odds, a return to the Emirates to link-up with his former midfield partner turned Gunners manager Mikel Arteta is the most likely scenario for the midfielder. However, given their dreadful start to the season, and things now beginning to look up, Arsenal fans are probably hoping that the club recruit someone a bit better to tighten up the midfield, like Lyon’s Houssem Aouar per say.
Rangers – 7/2*
Until recently, Rangers were the favourites to sign Wilshere, and with Gerrard, a former Three Lions teammate of the 28-year-old, at the helm, the Ibrox side might just have enough leverage to lure Wilshere north of the border. However, despite the opportunity of playing European football with the ‘Gers, the midfielder recently admitted that Scotland wouldn’t be his ‘first choice.’
“I played with Gerrard for England, I watched him growing up. He was one of my heroes growing up and he’s a legend,” Wilshere said.
“Playing there never crossed my mind, but now Gerrard’s there the door definitely isn’t closed – but it wouldn’t be my first choice.”
Aston Villa – 5/1*
Aston Villa are another Premier League side who could look to sign Wilshere in the January window. Dean Smith’s side had a fantastic start to the season and were once sitting in or around the top four. However, their form has become inconsistent, and they have subsequently dropped down the league. With the likes of Jack Grealish, John McGinn, Brazil international Douglas Luiz and the on-loan Ross Barkley, the midfield is arguably one of Villa’s strong points, but we doubt the club’s chiefs would turn their noses up at the prospect of adding Wilshere to their ranks, as they hope to get their season back on track.
*All odds correct at the time of writing.