Arsene Wenger admitted for the first time Jack Wilshere has an ongoing problem with an ankle injury.

He is unlikely to start at Crystal Palace today after limping out of the Champions League defeat to Borussia Dortmund.

Wilshere has consistently said there is no long-term issue with the injury, which kept him out for 17 months.

But Wenger confirmed some of the worst fears, saying: “It’s difficult for us to find the right rhythm for him. Before I always played him and people say I overplayed him.

“Now I try to be a bit more cautious. It’s difficult because his ankle is up and down a little bit. He’s getting better but it’s still inflamed sometimes and responds ­sometimes to games. But after that it goes down again and is normal.