Jack Wilshere Tweets Picture of Zinedine Zidane Smoking in Response to Criticism
Jack Wilshere has responded to criticism over his decision to smoke at a nightclub by tweeting a picture of the legendary Zinedine Zidane puffing on a cigarette.
Wilshere came under fire from Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger during Friday’s press conference but later chose to remind people that one of the game’s greats also had the odd flaw:
England midfielder Wilshere then quickly attempted to quash fears over his future, tweeting:
But for the record....I don't smoke!— Jack Wilshere (@JackWilshere) October 4, 2013
Wenger was clearly unhappy with his player when quizzed on the topic during Friday’s media briefing.
The Gunners boss stopped short of saying he would punish Wilshere, but he was visibly upset with the player’s apparent disregard for his own career, per David Kent of the Daily Mail Online:
I disagree completely with that behaviour. I need to have a chat with him about that.
You don't do what damages your health as a footballer. You damage your reputation when you do that in public.
I don't know what happened so I can't talk about any punishment.
Much of Wenger’s anguish will be caused by the fact he adopts a father-figure attitude towards his players, particularly those who emerge from the academy.
Wilshere is widely recognised as England’s great future hope, labelled by Stuart Pearce as the most naturally gifted player to emerge from the country since Paul Gascoigne, per Mirror Football.
Unfortunately, Gascoigne never looked after himself properly during his career and arguably wasted his magnificent talent, later to suffer from addiction problems that have threatened his life.
Will Wilshere fulfil his potential?
One image of Wilshere having one cigarette does not mean the Arsenal man is riddled with problems, but there is no doubt smoking will harm his physical capacity and therefore his career.
The midfielder’s bullish response to criticism by tweeting the image of Zidane indicates Wilshere is not taking this latest controversy too seriously.
However, Wenger’s view on the matter will likely become clear this weekend when he selects his lineup to face West Brom at the Hawthorns.
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