Arsenal have finally broken their silence over the question marks surrounding Arsene Wenger’s future, the Frenchman has paid attention to the concerns of fans and has claimed that their feelings will affect his decision on whether or not to sign a new contract.
The Gunner faithful seem to have finally had enough of falling short of league and European success every season and used the build-up to Tuesday’s Champions League clash at home to Bayern Munich to air their frustrations.
Already losing 5-1 on aggregate, Wenger’s men were already effectively out of the competition and headed into the game looking to restore some much needed pride.
Theo Walcott put his side ahead on the 20th minute mark and for some time, it looked like the hosts might just restore that pride but following a Laurent Koscielny red card in the 55th minute, Munich went onto have a second-half rout to again win 5-1 and make the final result 10-2 on aggregate.
It was an embarrassing showing from the Gunners who seem to be repeating the same mistakes season after season.
A protest complete with a banner stating “no new contract” took place outside of the Emirates prior the kick-off and a flag reading “Arsene, thanks for the memories but it’s time to so goodbye” has been seen amongst supporters for some time now.
Though, of course those memories the flag is referring to make it a difficult decision for both Wenger and the board. Of the fan’s reaction and his history at the club Wenger said: “I worked very hard for 20 years to make our fans happy and when you lose I understand they are not.”
Whilst the chairman of the club has stated he is aware of the situation and whilst fans are entitled to their opinion: “Arsene has a contract until the end of the season. Any decisions will be made by us mutually and communicated at the right time in the right way.”
Wenger has undoubtedly helped to shape Arsenal into the club it is today but in football, there is just no room for sentimentality. Leicester sacked their title winning hero in Ranier – perhaps Arsenal would be wise to follow this example.
The club and league’s longest serving manager has picked up three league titles, six FA Cups and six Community Shields during his time at the North London club but having failed to pick up a league title since 2004, fans are desperate for a change.
Arsenal always seem to start well and show great form but their inconsistency lets down them and their last ditch bid for fourth place proves fruitless as once in the competition, they’re sent packing in the last-16, usually by Bayern and are essentially a waste of a place.
Of course, you can’t just ban the club from the competition for repeatedly performing poorly despite calls from some to just do that and a new man at the helm may prove to be a breath of fresh air for the club.
There are a number of contenders to replace the Frenchman including current Juventus manager, Massimiliano Allegri.
Allegri’s men currently head Serie A by some eight points and are enjoying a great season, which of course, can’t be said for Arsenal.
Rafa Benitez is also a name that is been thrown around, and although the Spaniard was relegated with Newcastle last season, he is well on his way to brining the club back to the top flight.
Benitez is known to place huge focus on stability and that is something Arsenal crave. Diego Simeone is another potential replacement, the Atletico Madrid manager would fit in perfectly at Arsenal.
He boasts a strong defensive record and is huge on respect, something that would shake the dressing room at the Emirates and he could be the man to convince the likes of Alexis Sanchez, Mesut Ozil and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlin to remain at the club, each of which also have question marks surrounding their future.
Arsenal legend Theirry Henry is another name that has been frequently mentioned, though that would be somewhat of a sentimental appointment and the former striker clearly lacks managerial experience.
I agree that there is no room for sentimentality, but I do fail to see past my Wenger goggles often. Starting to lose patience and frustration now though. Raf is a good shout!