Jack Wilshere hopes his comeback for Arsenal's Under-21 side will prove to be the first step towards winning a place in England's squad for Euro 2016.
The 24-year-old midfielder has not played in 2015-16 after breaking his leg in pre-season, but made his comeback with a 65-minute appearance as the second string defeated Newcastle United 3-1 at Emirates Stadium on Friday.
Wilshere was spoken to by the referee after clashing with Henri Saivet, shot wide with a long-range effort and created a golden opportunity for Chris Willock during an outing he hopes will begin a productive end to the campaign.
"I want to go to the Euros. To do that I have to get in the Arsenal team, so I have to show the Arsenal and England managers what I can do," Wilshere told Arsenal Player.
"It felt really good to be back out there playing at the Emirates. I'm not ready yet for the first team, but it's another step on the road to fitness. It felt good to play in a match - it's totally different to training."
Manager Arsene Wenger had been forced to defend Wilshere this week after tabloid newspaper pictures reportedly showed him talking with police outside a London nightclub in the early hours of Sunday morning.
Goals from Dan Crowley, Stephy Mavididi and Serge Gnabry did the damage for Arsenal, who also welcomed back Tomas Rosicky from a thigh injury.
The 35-year-old – who has not played since January and is out of contract at the end of the season – completed the first half, setting up Mavididi's goal. Newcastle's only strike came when Krystian Bielik scored an own goal.