By Chris Harris
Arsène Wenger insists he will exercise caution over Jack Wilshere's comeback even though the England international is "doing extremely well" in training.
Wilshere ended a 14-month absence from football on Monday when he completed 63 minutes for the under-21s at West Brom, and he is expected to play against Reading in the same competition next week.
Wenger is pleased with Wilshere's progress but he will resist the temptation to draft him back into the first-team squad for now.
"Jack is doing very well but we need to be a bit patient," said Wenger. "He has played 60 minutes in the reserve team and he needs a few games, progressive build-up to get his body used again to competition, to shocks, to fights.
"But he is doing extremely well, the situation looks very good. We have to be cautious, not crazy, because of his talent you are always pushed in a situation where you would like to rush him back, and we have to resist that.
"The next match should be next week and he is working very very hard [in training]. The body is like that, when you have been out of competition for 14 months it takes a long time to find your sharpness back. You cannot rush it."
Wilshere's recovery is good news for England as well as Arsenal but Wenger is confident that national coach Roy Hodgson will be as patient as him.
"Everybody is keen [to have Wilshere back] and we are the first," he said.
"I think there are three things that are important for every player: the health of the player, the interests of the club and the interests of the national team. You have to try to combine the three but the most important thing of course is the health of the player.
"Roy Hodgson is long enough in the job to know that a player who has been out for 14 months, you have to give him time to play again. When the time comes up, he will play for England again of course."
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