Jack Wilshere says he is determined to feature for West Ham before the end of the season after making a return to full training.
The 27-year-old has not played for Manuel Pellegrini’s side since December 1 due to an ankle injury and has just made five appearances for the club this campaign.
It was feared the issue could rule him out until next season, but the former Arsenal man has returned to training ahead of schedule and set his sights on getting back into the first team in the coming weeks.
“I am back in full training. It has been a long time, frustrating, but it was something I had to do after speaking to the specialists,” Wilshere told Sky Sports.
“I am trying to get fit but it is not a great time to come back because you get fully fit, maybe play a couple of games and then the season finishes.
“It is going to be a big off-season for me as well, but I am feeling good and I want to play again this season.”
After a difficult start to the Premier League campaign, including defeats in each of their first four games, the Hammers are now firmly in contention to claim seventh spot and a Europa League place.
They are ninth, just two points behind seventh-placed Wolves, and Wilshere believes Pellegrini deserves credit for changing the mood around the club.
“I think it was always going to be difficult because of last season, it wasn’t a great season for West Ham,” he added.
“They obviously got a big-name manager in, who has won the Premier League, and suddenly the expectations go through the roof.
“It was always difficult the first few games at home and people spoke about the stadium. I think one big thing he has done this year is to change the atmosphere around the stadium and the team have done well.
“We still need to finish strong and push for that Europa League place. Everyone is happy. We are playing better football and we have brought in good players, so I am looking forward to getting back in there with the boys.”