A number of stories around today are claiming that Arsene Wenger will not be offered a role upstairs when he leaves Arsenal, with the club and manager going for a ‘clean break’.
It has long been speculated that Wenger would take a role back stage at the club, something that always struck me as very odd. How would a new manager feel coming in under that looming shadow?
The club, it is reported, will also not be turning to Wenger to pick his successor which leaves the question of who will? While it’s certainly not ideal that Wenger names the man to follow him, can you think of a single person on the board who you would trust with that decision? Find Stan Kroenke, dare him to name three other top managers. See what happens.
The media are all united in the view that this season will be Wenger’s last. The number of leaks that have come out since Wednesday night, with various papers all running similar EXCLUSIVES from different sources, speaks volumes.
There is a real pressure now on Wenger to step aside, unlike what we’ve seen in seasons gone by. That so many are coming forward to speak with the press, albeit anonymously, hints at massive discontent behind the scenes.
What is needed now is for Wenger to clarify his position sooner rather than later.
If he is leaving, he needs to make an announcement. That way, fans can get behind him and make his last few months at the club what they should be – a celebration of everything he has done for Arsenal and English football.
The longer he stays silent, the more hostile things will become. And nobody, surely not even the most fierce Wenger critic, can think that’s an appropriate way for our most successful manager of all time to bow out.
Perhaps he will tell us something at his pre-Sutton United press conference, although with the players off on Thursday, it would seem unlikely he would tell us before he told them.