Jack Wilshere sought out Paul Scholes to understand why he was criticized
Arsenal’s young midfielder Jack Wilshere was taken by surprise when he was criticised by English midfielder Paul Scholes. He was so curious to know as to why Scholes had criticised him that he directly messaged Gary Neville and asked him for Paul Scholes’ number.
Scholes said about Wilshere earlier this season, “Wilshere, what a really top young player, but he has not really gone on. Injuries have not helped him but he does not look any better player now than when he was 17.”
Wilshere speaking at London Colney said, “It was a bit strange – out of the blue,’’ “I remember watching it, he was having a go at Arsenal, and I was thinking: ‘Is he going to come for me?’’
“If it had come from a rubbish player I could say: ‘What are you talking about?’ But it came from Paul Scholes! For me he was the best English midfielder of all time.
“For the next few days after he said that I sat down and talked to my dad and a few of the coaches here. I respect him so much and I think he can make a great coach for any young player. I’m a young player and he’s been there and done it so I wanted to hear what he had to say.
“You live in a world of football where you get criticised all the time. It hurt a bit more when he did it. But in the game today everyone is improving all the time, it’s getting quicker. I just wanted to know what he thought.
“I DMed Gary to ask whether I could have his number. Gary Neville wrote back to me: ‘Just go easy on him.’ We had quite a good chat. He’s entitled to his opinion.’”
“He explained it a bit better and told me what he thought I should work on. He was right in a certain way. When I first burst on to the scene there was all this ‘blah, blah, blah’ [excited chatter about him] and then I got injured.
“I’ve had bad luck with injuries but I can’t keep saying I’ve been injured a lot. There comes a time when you stop being a kid and I think that’s what he’s referring to. ‘He’s young, he’s got all this potential, you have to start putting that potential in [to practise].’”
“This season I’ve improved a lot, scored a few more than I have in the past [five in 42] and got a few more assists. You can keep the ball and you can look good but it’s those stats that matter. That’s what I have to build on.’’