Jack Wilshere says England are not setting any targets for the World Cup as they step up their preparation for the showpiece in Russia this summer (Wilshere 1/3 to make England squad).
The Arsenal midfielder has forced his way back into the Three Lions set up with some fine performances for the Gunners this season, and will hope to get a chance to shine in the friendlies against Holland and Italy.
Wilshere was part of the England squad that travelled to Brazil full of confidence in 2014, while his last game for the Three Lions saw them lose to Iceland in Euro 2016.
With those two tournaments relatively fresh in the memory, Wilshere is keen to play down expectations heading to Russia (England 16/1 to win World Cup).
“The World Cup is a massive thing for us and we want to do well,” he said. “We don’t want to set ourselves any targets but I think going through after the World Cup the group is in a good position.
“If you look over the past years, especially Rio [before World Cup 2014], we were confident going into that and it didn’t work out. And with this group of players, it wouldn’t be fair.”
Wilshere also says the England squad is completely different to the one he first joined and insists that no matter what happens in Russia, the future looks a bright one.
“It’s completely different. I remember the first time I walked into an England squad, I went for dinner the first time and there was [Wayne] Rooney, [Frank] Lampard, [Steven] Gerrard, [Rio] Ferdinand, [John] Terry – big players who I had watched growing up,” said Wilshere.
“It’s a different feel now. There are more young players, there’s more of a group I think and there’s more of a plan towards the future.”
Odds subject to change.