• Premier League

Flamini backs Wilshere for success

ESPN staff
October 8, 2013
Just like old times...

Mathieu Flamini believes Jack Wilshere is over his unwanted media exposure and has backed the 21-year-old for greater success at Arsenal.

At the end of a week in which he was photographed smoking on a night out, the England midfielder broke his three-year wait without a Premier League goal with an equaliser in Sunday's draw at West Brom.

And he has been tipped by his team-mate to learn from the experience.

"I think Jack was focused," he said. "Things like that can happen. He is still young but the manager talked to him and it is behind him now.

"He is a very talented player, has a lot of quality and plays in a great team. He has everything to be successful. He has proven to everyone that he has done well game after game.

"He is doing well, of course, and he will improve game after game. Already, what he is doing is incredible. Everyone at the club is very happy with him. The fans are very happy. I think that everyone should be very happy."

But Flamini, who has made an impressive return to his former club, has warned Wilshere that he has to get used to close attention.

Sunday's draw was a feisty affair between two in-form teams and the Frenchman predicts that such a talent is bound to be singled out for special treatment.

"It is not that easy," Flamini added. "He plays that kind of game. He is a technical player, so every time, he has one or two players against him. He gets kicked from behind or they try and jump on him.

"It is not that easy when you are talented and trying to make the difference. So it is sometimes difficult to keep calm but I think he did it well in this game."

Flamini believes the two-week gap in Premier League fixtures has come at a good time for the leaders, who will hope to have Theo Walcott and Santi Cazorla for the resumption in mid-October.

He is also confident the week off will rid them of some of the fatigue of their Champions League win over Napoli last Tuesday.

"Every time after you play in the Champions League, it is not easy, as you give a lot physically and mentally. We know West Brom are a very good team, who have good quality and play good football. We are happy with a draw there.

"The international break comes at a really good time as we have played a lot. Everyone is tired physically and mentally, and this is also a good opportunity for players to come back into the group, like Theo and Santi. So I think everyone will be back in about two weeks."

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