By Nik Brumsack
Jack Wilshere says it is “a dream come true” to return to the England squad this week.
The midfielder, back in action after being sidelined by injury for almost a year and a half, has been included in Roy Hodgson’s squad for Wednesday’s friendly against Sweden.
Wilshere earned the last of his five international caps in June 2011, and he can’t wait for the opportunity to add to those at the brand-new Friends Arena in Stockholm.
“It’s a dream come true,” Wilshere told Arsenal Player. “It feels like the first time again. It’s been so long and now there’s a new manager and a totally new set-up.
“I was a bit nervous about meeting up with the squad and seeing how everything is done now. Last time we met up was at the Grove and now we’re going to Manchester so it’s totally different. I’m really looking forward to it.
“It was hard [to miss Euro 2012]. I was just like a fan, watching it with my family. To get the setback just before and miss it was heartbreaking but I worked all through the summer and worked hard to get my fitness back and shake off all the little niggles that I was getting.
“Now I’m back in the squad and hopefully if I keep my maintenance work up in the gym, I can improve on the pitch and stay in there.”
The 20-year-old is not the only Arsenal player to be called up by Hodgson. Carl Jenkinson was named in the squad after a hugely promising start to the season - and Wilshere believes his team-mate deserves his inclusion.
“I’m delighted for him,” he said. “It’s clear for everyone to see how much of an improvement has been made. He came to the Club playing barely any games for Charlton and it was a big step for him. He’s got a great character and he’s a great lad to have around. He’d run through a brick wall for you.
“To have him in your team and even in the dressing room is great and I’m delighted for him and his family. I know his dad will be delighted. It’s a good story and hopefully now he can get his place in the England squad and be a regular.”
Watch the full interview with Jack on Arsenal Player.
- Jack was speaking at Great Ormond Street Hospital, where the Club opened a Lung Function Unit - a legacy from Arsenal’s partnership with GOSH during the 2009/10 season