Arsene Wenger has signed a new two-year deal and the Wenger Out brigade have promised to step up their campaign, but getting behind the team now is more important than continuing to protest.
The league’s longest-serving manager, Wenger has been heavily scrutinised in recent years and speculation about his job security was at an all-time high after this season’s drastic fall from form across all competitions.
A 2-1 win over Chelsea in the FA Cup Final is the Gunners’ third piece of silverware in four seasons, though many have made their feelings clear that the victory only papers over the cracks which run through Arsenal’s long-term plans.
Having spent over £700m on players since arriving in 1996, many feel as though it’s now the perfect opportunity for change at the helm given a lack of progress in the UEFA Champions League and Premier League.
16 trophies and the club’s most successful manager, last weekend was seen as a good way to end his lengthy tenure in north London. Instead though, it has urged him to try and bolster the first-team squad in their attempts for more success.
As a result, it’s important that supporters collectively get behind the 67-year-old – not least as this will boost the players’ morale, not to mention his own.
Given the lack of updates in recent months, it was becoming increasingly likely that Wenger would be offered an extension and this has proven correct.
Although many have ridiculed the club for offering him a new deal, it could fuel the club to prove they mean business in the transfer market – which can only be achieved by making significant changes to the way they operate.
The Gunners have to be more assertive and efficient when it comes to negotiations, whilst their wage structure needs to be adjusted to avoid complications over contract demands from players.
“The message to the fans is in aid of the club. Let’s be together to support our players, to support the club and all give our absolute best to be at the level that we want to be,” Wenger told the club’s official website after signing another extension.
“We can move up to the next level, I’m convinced of that, by having faith in the way we want to play football and by supporting the players we have already. Of course we’ll try to strengthen our squad to be stronger next season, but we want to be faithful to the way we want to play the game. We want to support this way [of playing] all together.”
Thomas Tuchel, Diego Simeone, Massimiliano Allegri and Leonardo Jardim have all been heavily linked with becoming Wenger’s successor at some stage.
It will be intriguing to see how and where their managerial careers continue over the next few years, but it’s important that the club’s hierarchy start looking at building a succession plan to make the transition a smooth one.
There’s no point to the ‘Wenger Out’ fans continuing to rant and protest, especially with Wenger’s new deal meaning he’ll remain at the helm for another two years – at least.
Instead, it’s important we all work in unison to boost the team’s spirits and support them with an uncertain future ahead.