Arsène Wenger believes there are no limits to what Jack Wilshere could achieve - but is wary of the high expectation levels surrounding his protégé.
The England international has been in superb form after a successful return to the Arsenal first team following 14 months out with ankle and knee injuries.
While Wenger has been delighted with the 21-year-old’s performances, he insists he must maintain his hunger for the game if he to fulfil his vast potential.
“Let's not set any limitations for Jack,” the manager told Arsenal Player. “What is important is the day he will have made his career and can think, 'I have been as good as I could have hoped to be'.
“I have managed many great players in my life, the one common thing in their career is that they always wanted to improve. Every day they had 100 per cent focus.
“I believe the most important thing is that he has talent and loves football. As long as he loves football, he will improve. So let’s keep that important ingredient in the development of a player right, and not make them feel that they have nothing to grow for.
“Jack is someone who wants to improve, he has a good attitude and if he keeps that he will always continue to grow.”
There is intense interest in Wilshere’s development, but Wenger insists that expectation levels must be managed carefully.
“He is only 21 and has only been back for a short period of time,” he said. “I believe in England that the way to protect players is to just let them develop naturally and not put too much pressure on them.
“Here, the expectation level is so high on players that they are not in a normal development, sometimes there is so much focus on them that I feel it is a handicap.”Copyright 2013 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 15 Jan 2013