Speculation over Arsene Wenger’s future intensifies with every defeat and with plenty of them in the games leading up to the international break, pressure is intensifying on the Frenchman whose reign at Arsenal stretches back two decades.
It’s reported that Wenger will decide his future after the Premier League clash with Manchester United although that seems unlikely. A win could see Arsenal close the gap to the top four and in his mind, justify two more years. Defeat on the other hand, could open a nine-point gap, depending on results. If you’re interested in what the bookmakers have to say, check out a wagering provider such as CrownBet for a second perspective.
In recent months, Wenger has been called on by fans to quit but it looks like the Frenchman is still going to oversee Arsenal. However, we look at who the runners and riders who could replace Wenger if he changes his mind.
Arsenal’s record goal scorer is currently Roberto Martinez’s assistant with the Belgium national team and appeared to rule himself out in recent media interviews, claiming he was still learning about football management.
To many Gooners, he and Dennis Bergkamp are the managerial dream team, but the Dutch master also ruled himself out with comments on the Ajax website that he liked to leave football behind when he leaves the training ground each night, rather than immersing himself in watching matches on television.
With Wenger gone, the pair lack the experience right now, in much the same way as Patrick Vieira. It’s more likely that an ‘outsider’ will come in to keep the ship steady while the club moves into a new era.
The Juventus manager ticks all the boxes with titles won at both Milan and Juventus. Allegri is a pragmatic coach whose Juve sides regularly reach the last eight of the Champions League, something Wenger hasn’t managed since 2010.
With Arsenal’s defence at sixes and sevens in recent weeks, Allegri is keen on using three central defenders and seeing Antonio Conte’s success at Chelsea using that formation offers a tantalising prospect for supporters. Could Allegri guide the club back to the top of the table, and challenge in Europe?
Allegri is of the George Graham mould: a strong defence underpins everything but Juventus have never been short of a goal or two. Maybe easing the defensive duties on Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil could make them more productive in front of goal, which in the Chilean’s case is a frightening prospect.
The Barcelona boss announced he was quitting ahead of the remarkable comeback against Paris St Germain in the Champions League. Having coached at the Camp Nou, Enrique has the perfect credentials for playing attractive football and could ensure Wenger’s legacy survives.
In years to come, Enrique’s time at the Blaugrana will be reassessed. At the moment, he suffers from not being Pep Guardiola but he’s won everything in Spanish football, including back-to-back doubles, as well Champions League, Super Cup and Club World Cup glory.
While Arsenal wouldn’t expect the same level of success, Enrique is a proven winner although I could probably win most of those trophies with Lionel Messi in my side.
Maybe he could bring the Argentine with him…