By Chris Harris

Arsène Wenger has explained why he has omitted Jack Wilshere from his first squad of the season.

The 17-year-old midfielder became Arsenal’s youngest Premier League player last September and made a big splash in pre-season when he was named man-of-the-match in both Emirates Cup games.

Wilshere scored twice against Rangers in the 3-0 win which clinched that trophy and was rewarded with his first call-up to the England Under-21 squad. However he will play no part at Goodison Park on Saturday.

At his pre-match press conference, Wenger insisted that Wilshere is still very much in his plans.

“Tomorrow no because he is not in the squad but during the season, yes [he will be involved],” said the manager.

“On one side people say ‘you are too young, you do not have enough experience’. On the other people say ‘why do you not play people who are 17 and win the league?’

“We are already very young and Jack Wilshere will play a part in our season, but not the whole season. He is 17 years old.”

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14 Aug 2009