Former Tottenham Hotspur and Barcelona striker Gary Lineker believes Arsenal are “a long way behind” in the race for a top-four finish next season.

Speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live, the pundit questioned how Arsenal can improve the squad in the transfer market without having Champions League football as a lure.

Lineker believes the Gunners are some distance from the likes of Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester City and Liverpool, and doesn’t feel Arsenal can get back in the top-four next season.

“Arsenal have got a long way to go at the moment. If you ask me now whether Arsenal are going to be in the top four next season, I would say most probably not. They are further behind than Wenger thinks,” he said.

The ex-England centre-forward also questioned why Wenger – who recently won his seventh FA Cup in charge of season – is allowed to decide when he leaves the club given the lack of major trophies and their drop in league position.

“The only other example of a manager that decides when and where he goes is Sir Alex Ferguson (at Manchester United), but he was still winning league titles. Arsene Wenger was still winning FA Cups and until this season he had always got in the top four, but now that’s changed,” added Lineker.