Updated: Friday, 02 May 2014 20:29 | By Agence France-Presse

Wilshere no World Cup gamble says Wenger

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is confident England boss Roy Hodgson won't be taking an undue risk in selecting Jack Wilshere for his World Cup squad, provided the midfielder is "completely fit".


Wilshere has been out of first-team action following the fractured foot he suffered while playing for England in a friendly international against Denmark on March 5.

The Gunners had hoped to have him back for this weekend's Premier League match against West Bromwich Albion, but he might not now be available until their league finale at Norwich ahead of the FA Cup final on May 17.

England have three warm-up matches and a training camp ahead of their World Cup Group D opener against Italy in Brazil on June 14 and Wenger believes that will give the 22-year-old Wilshere sufficient time to get to full fitness.

"It is not a gamble if he is completely fit. It is a strengthening of the (England) team," Wenger said Friday.

"If there was a medical doubt then yes it would be a gamble, but I think he will be completely safe and on that front medically he should be all right."

Wilshere's fellow Arsenal midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is also hoping to be a member of Hodgson's World Cup squad.

Oxlade-Chamberlain missed Monday 3-0 win over Newcastle at the Emirates Stadium, that cemented Arsenal's grip on fourth position and a place in next season's Champions League, because of a niggling groin problem,

"Chamberlain at the moment has an inflamed groin," said Wenger. We will see how he progresses.

"For the World Cup he should be okay, for us, will he come back for the end of the season? I don't know," the veteran French manager added.

Arsenal right-back Bacary Sagna remains doubtful for the West Brom match because of a knee injury.

The France international is out of contract at the end of the season and has yet to respond to Arsenal's offer of a new deal.

"It is in his camp so he can give you a much better answer than I can," Wenger said.

"I would like the players to stay for more positive reasons, not for fear of failing somewhere else.

"You want the players to be part of this club.

"I believe that is something we are keen on here is to help players to love the club and stay for the good reasons, for the football we play, for the values we rate and for being part of the club that is special.

Wenger, 64, is himself out of contract come the end of the campaign and so Sunday's match could, in theory at least, be his final home game in charge of Arsenal -- a club he joined in 1990.

"There is always a chance because none of us know how long we will live," Wenger joked. "But on my desire, no, there is no doubt."

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