Manuel Pellegrini boldly likens Jack Wilshere to Andrea Pirlo | inside World Soccer

Manuel Pellegrini boldly likens Jack Wilshere to Andrea Pirlo

Friday, August 24, 2018

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Manuel Pellegrini has rated Jack Wilshere highly by comparing the West Ham United midfielder to Andrea Pirlo, the legend who won 116 caps for Italy, two Champions League titles, a World Cup and six Scudetti.

Former West Ham manager Sam Allardyce claimed Pellegrini's new midfield pairing of Wilshere and Mark Noble lacks the legs to outrun the opposition following consecutive defeats by Liverpool and Bournemouth.

However, Pellegrini is convinced that Wilshere is best suited to a sitting role in the West Ham midfield - whether he is partnered by Noble or not.

Speaking ahead of Saturday's Premier Leagua match at Arsenal, the Chilean said:

If you need fast players they cannot do it. But if you need good technical players that do not lose any balls, then they can play together.

A lot of you will remember Juventus around four or five years ago, they played with one holding midfielder. It was Pirlo. And Pirlo is the same as Jack. He has the same characteristics as Jack.

The 26-year-old was always highly rated at Arsenal, but injuries ruined his chances of a consistent run of games for the Gunners and England.

I think everyone praised Jack Wilshere not just for one game because if he could play in a normal shape without injury, he was always a player who makes a difference because he is a different player.

I am sure [we will see that Wilshere again] because he is just 26 years old. Because he knows better how he must manage his physical work, so as not to be injured. This season we are working with him from July 1, 40 to 50 days, and he's not having any problems.

He just has to recover his trust in what he can do. Maybe his career was not all his top [form], because he had a lot of injuries. So I think at this moment we must give him trust, let him play, because I repeat what I said: he is a different player and he will do it.

Wilshere is set to line up against Arsenal for the first time when the Hammers visit the Emirates in search of their first points of the season on Saturday.

The England midfielder made 125 Premier League appearances in 11 years as an Arsenal player, before he was allowed to leave on a free transfer in July.

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