Arsène’s Stock Grows Higher With Every Job He ‘Turns Down’

Real Madrid, AC Milan, Bayern Munich – Where will he end up?

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It’s lazy journalism really, but currently, whenever a managerial vacancy (or an imminent one in the case of AC Milan and Bayern Munich) comes up at the moment, the name of Arsène Wenger is linked with it. It’s great PR for the ex-Arsenal boss on one level, because it keeps his name in the public eye, and, in some mischievous quarters, the narrative is that he is turning down these opportunities, making him seem even more attractive to potential suitors.

In fairness to the man himself, he has quashed stories of any contact when asked, and the reality is that, in truth, there would have to be a unique set of circumstances for Wenger to get a job at one of the top clubs. I had a discussion last night on this subject, and it was put to me that a caretaker role at Bayern Munich could not be ruled out. The idea was that the Bavarian club have effectively written off this season already, at least in terms of retaining the Bundesliga, even if bookies still have them as marginal favourites over the unbeaten Borussia Dortmund. In Germany, the general opinion is different. Dortmund have a much better side this season, with the majority of Bayern’s main stars having passed their peak. The Munich club will go again next summer, by investing in new players, getting some loanees (such as Kingsley Coman) back and recruiting a fresh first team coach. Quite when the present incumbent Nico Kovac is given his cards is subject to conjecture, although it does look like a matter of when rather than if.

Intriguingly, assuming it is before the knockout rounds of the Champions League kick in, a few months at Bayern would actually offer Wenger the chance to finally win the European Cup after so many attempts with Arsenal, if he can negotiate the club to the final in Madrid.

However, he won’t get that chance. The perception of Wenger at the top European clubs is not that of a man who still knows how to win the big trophies. It became a standing joke in those circles that Arsenal became content just to qualify for the Champions League rather than change something at the club to actually try and win the Premier League and make a better fist of things in Europe. So if Bayern have ambitions to salvage a disappointing domestic season by triumphing in Europe for the first time since 2013, they are not going to give the job to the man from Alsace.

Arsene has stated that he will start work again in the New Year. He might, but it’s difficult to imagine it will be at one of the big clubs in Europe. Not only would they have to want him, he’d want the kind of control he had at Arsenal. The reality is that he’d have to move down the food chain quite a bit to find a club that would allow him that kind of power in 2019.

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  1. Hi Berry

    Dec 4, 2018, 08:11 #112630

    Mad Max...not sure if the lack of posters is because those that posted were all Wenger lovers. I think it more likely that the majority of comments on here were from those venting their anger at the appalling state of the club under Wenger. Things appear to have turned a corner and those important ingredients - hope and ambition - are back on the table, replacing the mind-numbingly predictability that went before.

  2. RobG

    Nov 20, 2018, 18:24 #112553

    Hooray ! The Gremlins have gone and I can Log In ? Have to say I was surprised that AW did not take the Japan National job when it came up as this would have been ideal. Knows the culture. Knows the language. Well respected. Could take his time. Not any immediate pressure. There is no way that Madrid or Munich will take him on. Herd that Fulham were interested ? And that is about where he's at in relation to the Prem'. It's not to deny his past achievements but they were all a dozen years or so back. But it will be interesting to see where he goes. I wonder what the odds are on him still being a non Manager come the end of this season ? Because I don't think he will be back in harness come May. But we'll see.

  3. Moscowgooner

    Nov 15, 2018, 09:11 #112550

    I think D of F at Kawasaki Frontale would suit him nicely - and the Laotian national team manager's job is also currently open (recently ranked the worst team in SE Asia, so the only way is up!) Billericay are also quite ambitious - with promotion on the cards; so another attractive option closer to home?

  4. markymark

    Nov 14, 2018, 19:51 #112547

    The ultimate hypocrisy would be if Wenger took in a director of football as he’s declared he doesn’t understand the role and would never operate unde one. In those circumstances I would not be happy to be an up and coming manager under his management . Next point is what can Wenger actually offer? His coaching skills ? His roll back of sensible planning such as actually training on opposition football clubs pitches in Europe? Reduction in training intensity with little direction. Players who love to express themselves might enjoy it but I can’t see a top club unravelling latest sports science techniques . I’d say a FIFA position would best suite or national manager of a 2nd tier seeded country

  5. mbg

    Nov 13, 2018, 23:45 #112537

    mad max, watch them all flock back when they smell or we win our first piece of silverware.

  6. mbg

    Nov 13, 2018, 23:28 #112536

    I'd be very surprised indeed if TOF ended up at any of those teams, not as a manager anyway, maybe as a DOF, a position he hated, derided and made fun of all his life.

  7. mbg

    Nov 13, 2018, 23:22 #112535

    In fairness to him quashing rumors ? When could we ever believe anything TOF said, a leopard never changes his spots especially an old past it one.

  8. mad max

    Nov 13, 2018, 19:36 #112534

    who really cares we need to be talking the future not about the wasted years we had to endure under him in the end, he wont get a top job he's finished and has been for a long time, I find it staggering how few people are posting on here now, it just goes to prove they were wenger fans not arsenal fans. emery needs time and some money to sort some of the problems wenger left us with i.e the defence so lets get behind him and the team we're a lot better than were last season that's for sure

  9. Bard

    Nov 13, 2018, 14:50 #112533

    It's difficult to imagine him getting one of the top jobs. His last decade at Arsenal consisted of overseeing a gradual deterioration. Rather like Mourinho he is finding that the game has moved on. It was one of his pressing weaknesses that he couldn't or wouldn't reinvent himself the way Ferguson did.