Arsenal could be on the lookout for a new manager come the end of the season after the club’s chief executive, Ivan Gazidis, hinted that Arsene Wenger may not sign a new contract come the end of the season.
With Wenger’s current deal expiring at the end of the 2016/17 campaign, Arsenal’s managerial future remains uncertain, and interest from the Football Association in Wenger with a view to appointing him as England manager is clouding the situation further.
Wenger faced fierce criticism from Arsenal supporters last season, with the ‘Time for Change’ group calling for the 66-year-old Frenchman to leave the club after 20 years of service. He has insisted that he will continue for as long as he feels he can bring success to north London, but did concede last month that the England job does interest him and that he could see himself in the role at some point in the future.
With the FA currently weighing up whether to appoint Gareth Southgate as the permanent replacement for Sam Allardyce, Gazidis has added fuel to the flames by stressing that Arsenal and Wenger are not bound to each other despite their long association.
“Arsenal is not Arsene Wenger. They’re not one in the same thing,” Gazidis said on Thursday. “He’s been clear and we’ve always been clear, that’s a mutual decision as to how long he’ll continue.
“Both need to be on the same page on that. In a football sense, he has transformed the club.”
Arsene Wenger’s best moments as Arsenal manager
Wenger cuts a much happier figure this season after Arsenal’s strong start to the season, having gone unbeaten since the opening weekend with seven wins and two draws in all competitions.