The Gunners icon took his side to a League and Cup double in 1998 and believes his old team wouldn't have had to sign the German if the England midfielder was pulling his weight.
Former Arsenal captain Tony Adams believes Mesut Ozil would not be at the Emirates if Jack Wilshere was fulfilling his potential.
Adams has accused Wilshere of letting his talent go to waste, arguing that Gunners boss Arsene Wenger would not have had to splash a club-record 50 million euros on Ozil last summer were the England international more focused on and off the field.
The injury-prone Wilshere had his judgement called into question this summer when he was pictured smoking on holiday and Adams says the 22-year-old has to get his act together if he is to realize his potential.
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"He must show more hunger and professionalism. He's in danger of not fulfilling his potential and his career could be over in the blink of an eye," Adams said in an interview with The Sun. "If push came to shove, for a cup final or big match, Arsene would pick Ozil ahead of Jack.
"He should have taken it as a personal insult that Arsenal went out and signed Ozil when they already had the same talent at their disposal in him. He has to be more verbal, shake things up and show more fire in his belly."
Wilshere has made just two appearances for Arsenal in preseason, following his return from England's World Cup campaign, but could be in line to start in the Community Shield against Manchester City on Sunday.