Jack Wilshere is set to play his first official fixture as a Bournemouth player on Saturday as Eddie Howe’s side play host to West Brom. Bournemouth are yet to pick up a win this season although they were moments away from doing so in their last fixture before the break only for Crystal Palace to snatch a late equaliser at Selhurst Park. Can the arrival of Wilshere make all the difference?
England international Wilshere was reportedly chased by over 20 clubs for his loan signature but Arsene Wenger felt that Bournemouth would be the best fit for the player who has been besieged by injuries and a lack of fitness. It was a big transfer coup for Bournemouth to win the race for his signature but it’s an ever bigger move for Wilshere.
If he can get a season of Football under his belt on the South Coast then there is no reason why he can’t be accepted back to The Emirates with all arms open next season but should we see another stop start campaign and a lack of game time then serious questions will be asked about how long Wilshere’s tenure on North London will be.
Jack will no doubt hog all the headlines in Dorset on Saturday but that’s not to forget the rumblings of discontent at West Brom as Tony Pulis has once again bemoaned the lack of transfer activity for The Baggies. The fact that the club was recently taken over by new Chinese owners and they decided not to spend over the Summer highlights the issue even more. Pulis says he is happy to stay at the club but if results go against him then I don’t think it will be him ultimately making that decision.
There will be one new face to start this afternoon for West Brom and that is Nacer Chadli. After making his £13m move from Tottenham he will be set to make his debut and inject some much needed creativity into a very languid West Brom midfield.
Last time out saw them play out a stalemate at home to Middlesbrough a result that certainly wouldn’t have swelled numbers of the Tony Pulis fanclub but after getting knocked out by Northampton in the League Cup just days earlier at least it would have taken the heat off of him by a notch.
Once again the objective for West Brom and Pulis seems to be just stay up that was all well and good under previous owner Jeremy Peace but you get the feeling that eventually the new owners are going to want a little bit more. Defeat on the South Coast could make things very interesting and that’s not something you can often say about this club.
Bournemouth are doing their best not to catch ‘Second Season Syndrome’ and a point against Palace will have certainly given them some optimism going into the break. They will now hope that a chance to rest and refocus will enable them to start their season properly this afternoon.
The face that they have new loanee Wilshere in their side will certainly give The Cherries a bit of a boost but the pressure will be on the Arsenal man to deliver from the off. He has a lot to prove but I think he’ll be able to show his worth and help Bournemouth to a first win of the season. A home win for me.