As Jack Wilshere and Bournemouth prepare to face Man City at the Vitality Stadium on Monday night, the on-loan Arsenal man has been giving a ringing endorsement by Pep Guardiola.
The Spaniard knows a thing or two about diminutive, skilful midfield players and he was quick to recall how Wilshere caught the eye when Arsenal played Barcelona in the Champions League some years ago.
“I remember in Barcelona and that year we played Arsenal,” he said. “He left a massive impression when he came. A high, high level. I know the problem with Jack Wilshere was just the injuries.
“He’s lucky to play regularly for one season and he is going to be back to being one of the best midfield players in England by far. He’s quality, he’s smart and has the quality on the ball.
“He has a special quality with the ball, dribbling as a holding midfielder to attack central defenders – it’s not easy to do that. He’s a little bit like Dembele at Tottenham.
“They have quality to pass, pass, pass and then immediately destroy the defensive structures. I’m so happy he’s back and he’s playing regularly.
“Hopefully on Monday he can play.”
Wilshere’s future remains uncertain, despite Eddie Howe’s desire to sign him for Bournemouth on a permanent basis.
Arsene Wenger has always said he wants to keep him at the club in the long-term, but as yet there have been no contract offers for a player who will have just 12 months left on his deal this summer.