Wenger - I'll nurture Wilshere
Arsene Wenger believes Jack Wilshere can be an Arsenal star, but won't put pressure on the teenager.
Last Updated: 24/09/08 4:24pm
Arsene Wenger believes Jack Wilshere has the potential to be an Arsenal star, but is wary of putting too much pressure on the teenager.
Wilshere scored his first senior goal on Tuesday evening as a young Gunners side - with an average age of just 19 - defeated Sheffield United 6-0 in the Carling Cup third round.
Wenger admits the 16-year-old has all the components to be a first-class player but has stressed the need to be patient with his talent.
"He is a quiet boy, very determined and focused. For the rest, the talent is there. You have seen that again," said the Frenchman.
"When you are a manager of a boy like that who has the talent, you are always cautious to put too much pressure on him and too high a level of expectation.
"I believe it is all in there, but also that I have a responsibility to nurture him and get him in the right development over the next two or three years, that will be vital.
"From 16 to 19 is a very important age for the development of a football player - and Jack has skipped a few classes!"
Wenger added: "People tell me he is a bit like (former Arsenal midfielder) Liam Brady [now head of youth development and academy director at the club], because he has good balance and change of direction.
"I believe later (in his career) he will be a central midfielder or behind the strikers."