The Frenchman agrees with his player’s sentiment.
The story dominating the sports media in England currently is Arsenal star Jack Wilshere’s comments on who should and shouldn’t play for the national team.
The 21-year-old was asked about Manchester United starlet Adnan Januzaj and whether the Belgian-born winger of Kosovo origin should play for the Three Lions.
Wilshere said that only English people should play for the team and living in the country for five years does not make a player English.
This led England cricketer Kevin Pietersen to join the debate, as a South African-born cricketer who doesn’t play for the country of the 33-year-old’s birth.
Pietersen gave examples such as double Olympic gold medallist Mo Farah – who was born in Sierra Leone – and Chris Froome, the 2013 Tour De France winner who hails from Kenya.
The national papers have jumped on the bandwagon and lambasted Wilshere, but the midfielder does have one adversary – Gunners manager Arsene Wenger.
“I agree with him. I always said also an Englishman should manage the England team.” the Frenchman told BBC Sport.
“If we are not clear on that the national teams will become like a club – players will buy passports.
“I personally believe what we have really to define is what is an English player and we get that more and more.”
Essentially the answer is not a simple one, but Wilshere is probably now wishing the player had thought a little more before making the comments.
It’s a debate that will surely go on for some time more – well at least until England play Montenegro on Friday and then there will be something else to talk about.
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