Wilshere’s back, back in trouble


The Arsenal midfielder has not played a minute of football this season after breaking a leg in training on the eve of the Community Shield in August.

Now, Wilshere’s long-awaited return to training has been clouded by controversy after police confirmed they are investigating an incident outside a West End nightclub.

One witness to the incident, which began around 2.15am, said an apparently inebriated Wilshere became involved in a spat in front of the entrance to Cafe de Paris, on Coventry Street.

He is said to have stormed off to a nearby bureau de change, where he continued to argue with a fellow reveller who was attempting to film on his phone.

There were further scenes of disorder in a narrow alleyway nearby as a handful of police officers arrived to split up the rowdy group.

Wilshere is said to have tried to cover his face with his jacket as he grew concerned members of the public were attempting to film him.

Wilshere denies any allegations of assault, with sources close to the player insisting the 24-year-old didn’t throw any punches.

The player declined to comment last night.

The England star was on a night out with his girlfriend and a group of friends when the flash-point occurred.

Wilshere had been given yesterday off by manager Arsene Wenger and he took the opportunity to let his hair down after a gruelling eight-month rehabilitation programme. But now he is counting the cost of another PR disaster.

A Metropolitan Police statement read: ‘At 02:15hrs on Sunday, 3 April, police patrolling Coventry Street, W1, became aware of two groups of males involved in an altercation.

‘Officers intervened and one man claimed he was assaulted. He did not require hospital treatment. There have been no arrests. Enquiries continue.’

Arsenal last night insisted the incident was a private matter and would be dealt with internally this week.

But club officials were understood to be less than impressed by Wilshere’s antics, particularly as he had only just returned to fitness.

Wenger is also likely to be disappointed with the latest controversy involving his talented midfielder. The Arsenal manager has been forced to publicly defend Wilshere on more than one occasion after his off-the-field scrapes.

In 2010, Wilshere was arrested following a fracas outside a club in Kensington, west London.

He has also been caught smoking cigarettes and holding a shisha pipe in recent years, all incidents that have not gone down well with Wenger.

The Gunners boss is set to discuss the latest incident with Wilshere at the club’s London Colney HQ today.

News of yesterday’s altercation will also interest England manager Roy Hodgson, who has held regular discussions with Wenger over Wilshere’s rehabilitation.

The midfielder has been pencilled in for a playing return this Friday when Arsenal Under 21s face Newcastle at the Emirates Stadium.

If everything goes according to plan, Wilshere will be ready to make a first-team return before the end of the month. His pending return has provided Hodgson with a huge boost ahead of the European Championship, which starts in June.

Despite his lack of action, Wilshere, if fit, is likely to play a key role in France, with Hodgson having earmarked him for a deep-lying central midfield role.

Speaking on Friday, Wenger said: ‘Once he is completely fit and competitive he will be available for Arsenal and for the national team.

‘If he’s completely fit, then no, it’s not a gamble to take him to France. Would I prefer him to stay here over the summer? No. You want your players to compete.’

Jack Wilshere is no stranger to controversy, as his long history of misdemeanours shows...

Wilshere’s rap sheet:

2010 Arrested for assault after a brawl outside a nightclub and eventually cautioned.

2011Accepted a police warning after attempting to spit on a taxi driver wearing a Tottenham Hotspur hat.

2012 Warned by UEFA after tweeting about betting during an Arsenal Champions League match.

2013 Banned for two games after making an obscene gesture at Manchester City fans.

2013 Spotted outside a London nightclub holding a cigarette.

2014 Sky forced to apologise after Wilshere leads obscene chant about Tottenham at FA Cup victory parade.

2014 Smoking in a swimming pool in Las Vegas at a party after England’s World Cup exit.

2015 Caught on camera holding a shisha pipe at a London nightclub.

2015 Apologises after leading another foul-mouthed, anti-Tottenham chant during Arsenal’s FA Cup victory parade. – Daily Mail

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