Arsenal Blogs

If The Board Can’t Agree What Hope Is There For The Fans


With Arsene Wenger’s announcement of his resignation last week, Arsenal are now in the process of building new manager shortlists and using a fine tooth comb to ensure the next man hits the ground running and we don’t struggle as Manchester United did when they sought to replace Sir Alex Ferguson.

Clearly, the decision on our next manager is going to be absolutely huge in the life of the club. With anti-Wenger sentiment already well known, if the appointment goes wrong and Arsenal fail to quickly renew faith and hope when the 2018/19 campaign kicks off, the anti-Wenger brigade will be out in force as there will be an element of needing to be proven right and that they were justified in the belief that getting rid of Wenger would see us close the gap on the Premier League title.

It could very well not be pretty, as should the worst happen Wenger supporters will only feel more emboldened in their own standpoint.

Sky Sports have taken a look into the men that will be steering Arsenal through these new managerial waters and their thoughts on Ivan Gazidis, Raul Sanllehi and Sven Mislintat can be read on the above link.

Once they find commonality in their own decisions, their advice will go to majority shareholder Stan Kroenke for the final word.

Irrespective of fan pressures and expectations, the search is complicated by the upcoming World Cup in Russia and summer dealings of any type are already shoehorned into a shorter window in reality – especially with transfer changes taking effect in the Premier League as well – so the timing is hardly perfect.

We need a new man in quickly, so he can assess the group and stamp his own mark on the side before the transfer window slams shut and although having a blank canvass could be a benefit as Sky report, starting from the beginning is a pressure on its own as we follow the process through.

It’s reported that Gazidis has a preference for former skipper Mikel Arteta who has impressed as an assistant manager alongside Pep Guardiola at Manchester City. Aged only 36 he’s at the beginning of a long journey in coaching but taking the hot seat is worlds apart from being second in command. His age, relative inexperience in coaching and lack of managerial experience would be a worry, even if he is an attractive option.

Sanllehi apparently prefers former colleague Luis Enrique. The 47-year-old has won two La Liga titles as well as the Champions League at Barcelona and it’s believed he is keen to test himself in the English game.

Mislintat is said to favour Hoffenheim’s Julian Nagelsmann and Schalke’s Domenico Tedesco. There is a younger flavour to both these men. Nagelsmann is only 30 years old and has considerably improved his club since taking over in his late 20’s with them in the relegation zone. Tedesco is only 32 and Schalke sit in second spot in the Bundesliga in his first season in charge.

They are far from the only names linked though. RB Leipzig Sporting Director Ralf Rangnick, Carlo Ancelotti, Thomas Tuchel, Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira are also strongly listed, as are many others.

Tuchel, however, seems a shot in the dark as he famously fell out with Mislintat during their time at Borussia Dortmund.

With a plethora of potential options, Sky point to the fact the three deciders have only been working together for 12 months and if their preferred options are to be believed, they are each pulling in their own direction at this stage.

Whether that complicates agreement down the line remains to be seen.

An additional complication is our Europa League involvement. Should we not get sixth place, it means an early start to the campaign and that adds additional pressure to the appointment and then the speed to which our new gaffer will have to bed in and get to work.

Many fans will say there’s no time to bed in, but if ‘must win’ game pressures come quickly, it could be the difference between a new man making the right initial signings and then speedy signings of those he’s worked with previously. The latter is not necessarily a problem, most managers sign one or two key former players they can use to help change a dressing room and get their message across, but there is a risk if speed is of the essence anyone worked with before becomes an option. Their relationship with the manager notwithstanding, they still have to suit the group, suit the club and play a role for it to be classed as a sensible signing.

It’s set to be an interesting few months and plenty are nervous!

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