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Arsenal boss hints at permanent change in position for Wilshere

Jack Wilshere, Arsenal. Photo: Tony Marshall/EMPICS Sport Jack Wilshere, Arsenal. Photo: Tony Marshall/EMPICS Sport

Thursday, January 17, 2013
8:20 AM

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger hailed Jack Wilshere as the “complete midfielder” after the England man fired the Gunners into the fourth round of the FA Cup with a superb late winner against Swansea at the Emirates Stadium.

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The 21-year-old - out for almost 18 months with ankle and knee injuries before returning to action this season - capped a man-of-the-match display to finally beat inspired Swansea goalkeeper Michel Vorm with a 20-yard strike on 86 minutes to set up a trip to Brighton and keep alive hopes of Arsenal’s first trophy since 2005.

The Gunners were much improved from the lacklustre 2-0 Barclays Premier League defeat to Manchester City on Sunday, and but for a combination of poor finishing and brilliant defending would have had tonight’s replay wrapped up well before Wilshere’s fine late effort.

“Jack was outstanding tonight,” Wenger said. “He played in a different position, a bit higher up and it suited him well. I didn’t expect him to be this good at this stage.

“I always thought that if we could get Jack back to a reasonable level by January we will have done well, but he is ahead of what I could imagine.

“He is back to what he was before the injury, I think so, yes.

“A complete midfielder can defend and attack and Jack can also dribble and give a final ball so the closer players like him are to the goal the better it is for them.

“He has quality and enthusiasm and a love for the game, which is the most important thing for me.”

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