By Chris Harris
Arsène Wenger expects Jack Wilshere to play his part as Arsenal look for the blend of youth and experience that can deliver the Premier League title.
The 18-year-old has had a week to remember, making his senior England debut as a late substitute against Hungary on Wednesday night before starting his first top-flight game for Arsenal at Liverpool on Sunday.
Wilshere was withdrawn during the second half of that 1-1 draw at Anfield but he did not look out of place among midfield luminaries like Steven Gerrard.
Wenger believes the teenager will have a role to play in Arsenal's chase for honours but he is well aware that, for all Wilshere's precocious talent, his team will need experience as well as potential this season.
"Jack is ready to fight for his place at Arsenal," said Wenger, speaking ahead of Sunday's Premier League opener.
"That is linked with the fact that you [reporters] ask me if I want to win the title and yet you want as well an 18-year-old player to play in the team.
"It is not contradictory because Jack is an exceptional talent but you have to combine both experience and potential to win the league.
"You have to accept as well we are in a country where it is difficult [to play a young player so regularly].
"You said to me that Manchester City invests over £100 million and us £8 million and if we do not win the title it is a scandal! You have to accept that the league is at a high level and it isn’t as easy as it looks."Copyright 2017 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