Wenger regrets Wilshere loan exit

Arsene Wenger admits he somewhat regrets the decision to let Jack Wilshere leave Arsenal on loan after his midfield options have been depleted.

Wilshere was allowed to join fellow Premier League side Bournemouth on a season-long loan during the summer after a succession of injury issues at the Emirates.

The England international has returned to form at Bournemouth after a consistent run of games, yet there is no option for Arsenal to recall the 25-year-old in January.

Wilshere would be a welcome option for Arsenal at present, with Wenger without the injured Francis Coquelin and Santi Cazorla, plus African Cup of Nations participant Mohamed Elneny.

And when asked if he regretted allowing Wilshere to leave, Wenger said: "Yes, I could use him now.

"But if he had not played until now, he would not be ready to play.

“What looks unfair at some moments in the season is that you know at some stage you could need the player.

"But even at the start you need to have the right balance between competition and numbers and chances for the player to play. And still today I think it was the right decision for him to go."