Jack Wilshere says he is living the dream at Arsenal and revealed he wants to emulate the career of legendary club captain Tony Adams.
The England international also distanced himself from comparisons to former teammate Cesc Fabregas making clear that while the Spaniard was dedicated to the Gunners cause for eight years he lacked a family connection to make him stay longer.
Highlighting his own strong bond with his childhood club, Wilshere told the Daily Mail: “I’ve been at this club 10 years and to come through the academy at Hale End and break into the first team is a great story. It’s a dream.
“To have my family 20 minutes from the training ground and an hour from the stadium is perfect for me. Cesc wanted to go home. Home for me is Arsenal. Cesc wanted to go back to his family and friends. My family and friends are 20 minutes away. It’s perfect.
“I’ve played 39 games in the Premier League, which is nothing when you look at players like Tony Adams and how many appearances they made. That’s something I want to do.”
Aware that Arsenal face a tough uphill battle if they are to end the silverware drought which dates back to when he was just 13-years-old, Wilshere clarified that Arsene Wenger and his fellow squad members were as ambitious as ever in chasing the Premier League title.
“Our ambition every year is to challenge for the Premier League title. If we didn’t think we could do that, we would be under-achieving.
“People might say we’re a long way off — and the table doesn’t lie, we are a few points behind — but we know what we have to do.
“We know we can’t afford to drop points. We know we need to be in the top four. We know we need to win a trophy and get in the Champions League again.
“We do it every year and there’s no reason why we can’t do it again.”
It’s tough not to love this kid and while we Arsenal fans have had our fingers burned enough in recent years by players kissing badges and professing their love to the club, it’s pretty obvious in this case that Wilshere speaks from the heart.
Let’s hope that with all the temptations that come with personal success he’s able to maintain these sentiments through thick and thin. Do that and he may just have a shot at following in Adams’ vaunted footsteps.