Arsenal skipper: Jack can be one of the best midfielders in the world

15:46 10 October 2012

Arsenal's Jack Wilshere. Photo: David Davies/PA Wire

Arsenal's Jack Wilshere. Photo: David Davies/PA Wire

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Arsenal captain Thomas Vermaelen believes Jack Wilshere can become on of the best players in the world once he returns to full match fitness.

The 20-year-old made another step towards the Gunners’ first team yesterday when he played in the under-21 against Reading.

The England international missed all of last season with an ankle injury and manager Arsene Wenger has urged caution over his rehabilitation, but Belgian international Vermaelen can’t wait for Wilshere to return.

“For me, he can be one of the best midfielders in the world. He has the potential for that,” Vermaelen told Arsenal Player.

“He looks much stronger and that’s good.

“I am really happy he is coming back now. Jack is working on his match-fitness and that is the most important thing. I think in the future [he] will lift the team.”

Arsenal recovered from the disappointment of a home defeat by Premier League leaders Chelsea to go into the international break on the back of a battling 3-1 win at West Ham which leaves them in touch with the chasing pack.

Vermaelen said: “The mentality of the group is really good.

“Everybody wants to work and win games, are really ambitious and you can see on the pitch everybody wants to fight for each other.”

Most of Arsene Wenger’s first-team squad will be away on international duty, although defender Kieran Gibbs pulled out of the England squad after suffering a minor thigh problem at Upton Park.

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