With talks over a new deal for the Frenchman is Wenger the only choice Arsenal have?
After 17 years with the Gunners in which time he has revolutionised the club and also to an extent the recruitment process of many English clubs, who now look abroad when appointing new coaches, something that back in 1997 was most uncommon.
During his tenure Wenger has become the first foreign coach to win the Premier League title a feat he has achieved three times as well as winning the FA Cup four times and also led Arsenal to their first European Cup final.
However after an eight year trophy drought and Wenger now entering the final year of his contract many feel he simply must win something to keep his job.
During those infamous eight years the club has moved to the Emirates Stadium with the club undergoing a new philosophy during which many of the club’s star names have been sold as they try to subsidise the stadium debt.
However many reports say this summer “le Professeur” has been given the green light to sign big names in order to lead Arsenal back to silverware with the club being linked with players such as Lars Bender, Gonzalo Higuain, Wayne Rooney and even Luis Suarez.
Many fans are willing and patient enough to stick by the Frenchman but the “Wenger Out” brigade have been very vocal in their views: wanting to see change, believing Wenger’s tenure has become stale and hope to see fresh ideas enter the club.
What other options other than offer Wenger a new long term deal, in hope he’ll lead the Gunners back to the glory days do they have?
The club could offer Wenger a year rolling contract, something that worked well for rivals Manchester United with now former manager Sir Alex Ferguson, albeit for different reasons.
With a rolling contract it would save the Frenchman’s tenure going stale and would show the club will not be offering unfulfilled promises, showing their intent meaning Arsenal must challenge for trophies, or show progress or the manager’s position could be under threat.
This could also be a risky manoeuvre for the club though with their manager attracting interest from clubs such as Real Madrid and Paris St. Germain in recent years and could lead to Wenger feeling betrayed by the club, with his position under threat each season.
Otherwise the club could always pursue a new manager, the question is who?
Jurgen Klopp would be one manager who the fans would like to see after what he has done for Dortmund during his time in charge having delivered two titles back-to-back beating off Bayern Munich as well as winning the German Cup in 2012 and also last season taking his unfancied Dortmund side to the Champions League final.
Klopp has certain similarities to Wenger during his most successful days at Arsenal, pursuing a similar transfer policy Wenger has at Arsenal, signing young, vibrant and hungry players who were previously unknowns who grow and develop as a team, as well as his fast, counter-attacking style of play.
Frank De Boer of Ajax would be another possibility.
Having brought style back to the Amsterdam Arena winning three Eredivisie titles back-to-back (becoming only the third Ajax manager behind Rinus Michels and Johan Cruyff to acheive this accomplishment as well as ending the club’s seven year wait for a league title) and making Ajax more competitive in European competitions once more, all of this done by promoting from within the club, using the club’s famous youth system, of which De Boer himself was a product, with players like Christian Eriksen, Viktor Fischer and Toby Alderweireld helping lead the club to success as well as attracting attention from other clubs around the continent.
De Boer not only has worked successfully with the youth system at Ajax, something that is a cherished part of the set up at Arsenal too but is another manager who plays the attractive kind of football Arsenal fans now demand and is a manager who understands the ethos of the club he currently manages, one not too dissimilar to that of Arsenal and with his assistant being Dennis Bergkamp as well as Ajax’s Sporting Director being former Gunner Marc Overmars a move to the Emirates may be done with a ease.
However both of those would be new to the English game, Michael Laudrup would be an alternative who has experience of the Premier League.
Having taken Swansea on prior to their second campaign in the Premier League many critics felt the Swans may fall victim to second season syndrome and suffer relegation, that notion couldn’t be further from reality.
The Dane took the Welsh side to their first major piece of silverware in the form of the League Cup and guided the side to an impressive top half finish of ninth.
Laudrup has continued Swansea’s philosophy of passing football adding his own nous to the job tweaking Rodgers’ style to help the club progress even further, he has also shown impeccable ability in the transfer market with “bargain of the season” Michu signed for just £2 million last season as well as the arrivals of Chico, De Guzman (on loan) and Pablo Hernandez, he has also wasted no time so far this summer signing Jordi Amat and highly rated Wilfried Bony, who was named the Dutch player of the year last time out.
Whatever the outcome one thing is for certain this is a crucial decision for Arsenal Football Club with the fan base demanding on-field success and hoping to see the club start to become active in their summer transfer business rather soon with many of their rivals having already begun their summer recruiting.