Football

Wenger: Wilshere getting back to his best

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger singled out Jack Wilshere for praise after the midfielder's strong showing helped the Gunners beat Bate Borisov 4-2 in a Europa League game in Belarus yesterday morning (Singapore time).

France striker Olivier Giroud scored his 100th goal for the club with a penalty, while Theo Walcott hit a brace and Rob Holding opened his account as Arsenal went top of Group H.

Wilshere, limited to just two Europa League appearances this season, impressed with his creativity in a No. 10 role and Wenger said the 25-year-old was edging closer to his best.

"He had an outstanding first half and he did fight until the end. I think he is on a good way back to his best. He has shown that tonight," Wenger told the club's website.

"He is at an age where a player normally gets to the best of his career. He is on the way up and he has only been stopped by a series of injuries."

Wilshere slipped down the pecking order at Arsenal after managing only 17 games in two seasons blighted by prolonged spells on the sidelines.

He made 27 league appearances for Bournemouth on loan last season, his biggest run of domestic outings since the 2013-14 season and Wenger hoped the player would stay fit.

Meanwhile, Everton boss Ronald Koeman accused his side of being "too afraid to play football", after they conceded an 88th-minute equaliser to draw 2-2 with Apollon Limassol in Group E.

The Toffees fell behind to Adrian Sardinero's goal, but Wayne Rooney and Nikola Vasic made it 2-1.

Hector Yuste levelled for the Cypriot side two minutes from time, just after their former Sunderland defender Valentin Roberge was sent off.

Both Arsenal and Everton return to EPL action tomorrow night.

The Gunners host Brighton, while Everton entertain Burnley. - WIRE SERVICES

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