Aaron Ramsey should have been “a future Arsenal captain”, according to Jack Wilshere, with another “great player” seemingly heading out of Emirates Stadium.
The Gunners have picked up an unfortunate habit of allowing senior stars to run down their contracts, with Ramsey the latest to have entered the final 12 months of his terms.
He is now set to drop into the free agent pool at the end of the season, with no January switch being sought, and Wilshere – who left Arsenal once his own contract expired over the summer – feels a top talent is being allowed to slip through the net in north London.
A man who spent 17 years on the club’s books before leaving for West Ham told the Islington Gazette: “He’s [Ramsey] grown up to be a great player with Arsenal. They could do with someone like him. We know what he can do for the club.
“For me he’s a future Arsenal captain. I know he loves the club. It’s difficult for me to comment on because I’m not there but I do know he’s a great player – if it was me I know I would want to keep him around.
“He’s a great guy to have around. He’s been at the club so long and knows it inside out. If you look at what he’s done for the club too.
“We went into the first team in the same year. He came from Cardiff and I came from the youth team. We automatically clicked because we were both young and new to that sort of environment.”
With Ramsey set to become available in the not too distant future, various landing spots have been mooted for the 27-year-old.
Wilshere believes a former team-mate would slip seamlessly into the fold at any side in world football after proving himself to be a reliable performer at the very highest level.
The England international added: “I think you’ve got to look at the situation and ask: ‘How many top teams in the Premier League and elsewhere could he get in?’
“And you’d have to say them all - and that speaks volumes about the type of player he is.”