Arsenal FC : 5 Managers Who Could Replace Arsene Wenger
Speculation is rife and many are saying that this could be Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger's last season as le Boss. Some will say he may not even make the end of the season as the team appear to be on a downward spiral and a trance of poor results, which commenced the day they threw away the chance to win their first trophy in six years, The Carling Cup.
The problem, however, stems further back than that as the team has depleted, and the quality of football has receded over the years to the point it is at now.
Wenger has had ample opportunity to change and turn things around, but perhaps the most stubborn manager in the world has not taken such chances.
The team needs a fresh outlook and new ideas. Players need to go and players need to come in. Defence needs to be a priority and the tactics need to differ.
As his inevitable exit looms I have produced a short list of managers who could take over the reigns at Emirates. Enjoy. Hate. Agree or disagree, here they are:
As a player he has done it all: We are talking Champions Leagues, Italian and Dutch League titles, not to mention winning the European Football Championships with Holland.
This man has international management experience with Holland as well as coaching at the top level of club football. Who can forget his Barcelona team of 2004, which boasted players such as Ronaldinho, Ludovic Guily, Deco and Samuel Eto'o to name but a few.
After a tough start for the manager, he and his team went on to win two La Liga's back to back, the Supacopa de Espana and the coveted Uefa Champions League.
Not without his critics, he would still be seen as a Hollywood acquisition and would be able to attract the marquee players Arsenal need and Mr. Wenger is so reluctant to acquire.
He is an attack-minded manager who is from the Dutch school of total football, Ajax, only his defensive qualities as a coach are perhaps suspect, but perhaps he would bring the right coaches in.
I liked him as a player and I like him as a manager; he is a man players would respect and currently coaches the Saudi Arabia national team.
This man has admirers worldwide and has proved himself as a manager at club and international level. Every team and player he has managed in has nothing but glowing praise for the man.
For instance his short period at Chelsea FC saw him stabilize a flagging team, after taking over in February, and helping them to finish the season strongly in second place and lift the FA Cup and losing only once.
He has managed across the world and his experience abroad would be a great asset especially in the modern game. He has won countless Dutch leagues amongst other trophies, along with the golden trophy, the then European Cup (CL).
For me his involvement in getting South Korea to the semi-final of the World Cup in 2002 was nothing short of a miracle. He has since taken Russia, to the the semi-finals of the Euro 2008.
His management skills are broad, and he is a good all-rounder. He manages to get the best out of a defence, and that encourages the rest of the team to flourish.
Good solid pick, but availability could be an issue as is the current manager of Turkey, who he chose in favour of carrying on at Stamford Bridge. A man of principles and integrity. A man's man.
Eighteen titles to his name should tell you everything you need to know about this man. Tough, resolute and German; a strong competitor and a born winner, it can be seen in his eyes. I believe him to be in the same ilk of Sir Alex Ferguson.
This man has won seven Bundesliga titles with Bayern Munich and Borrusia Dortmund respectively, lifting the Champions League with both clubs in different decades showing the adaptability of his talents.
Hitzfeld is well-respected worldwide despite never being a manager in another competitive domestic league other than Germany's, so perhaps the Premiership would offer him a challenge.
His management traits are much like the man himself, elusive, hard to break and a thorn in the side of his opponents. Currently managing the Switzerland national team after beginning his career as coach in the country.
He is always devoted to his job, but could he be prised away to more competitive surroundings?
This would perhaps be the fan favourite as Dennis Bergkamp is no less than an Arsenal legend, perhaps the one most close to the hearts of Arsenal supporters. Not only did he show great skill and application, but he was loyal, choosing to end his career at Highbury.
For some reason Wenger turned him down when he wanted to be a coach at Arsenal, but at least this allowed him to find his own feet and he is now assistant manager at the club that gave him the stepping stone to stardom, Ajax.
Would he bring back a winning mentality and attitude to Arsenal? The answer is a resounding yes. This man is worshiped here and has won three Premier League trophies as well as countless cups and accolades. He would be a great ambassador and the kind of figurehead the youths of Arsenal need as they struggle to cement their intentions.
The problem would be is he has not managed at top level and would be a big risk, a risk Arsenal should not be taking. If I could rule with my heart, he would be the perfect candidate, but to rule with my head would mean that he should rightly be overlooked as a lack of experience could haunt him too early in his career.
The job at Arsenal would be too much too soon for him.
This is perhaps the most controversial of all my pics, not to add the fact that the man has not coached for 10 years. Many fans have not forgiven him for the controversial bung scandal and the fact that he went on to manage Spurs, the fact is he was a great manager.
This is the man responsible for the famous back four which included Dixon. Adams, Winterburn and Bould. He made it his priority to create a defence almost impenetrable and with the sharpest off-side the world has ever seen. It was he who purchased the likes of Ian Wright and Paul Merson.
This man knew how to identify the problem and solve it and do it all for the name of the club. It is his team that I associate our attitude, application and identity with. That resolute, stubborn, never-say-die attitude was displayed in almost every game he managed. By hook or by crook, he delivered surprising results. He was the springboard for the modern Arsenal.
He is not without his accolades. Who can forget the day, in 1989, when Arsenal won the title at Anfield by beating second place Liverpool by two clear goals, exactly what was needed to lift the English title. He went on to lift the trophy again in 1991 along with a bunch of cup wins including the unforgettable UEFA Cup Winners Cup triumph against the then-great Parma.
Let it not be forgotten this guy was a great servant as a player and a manager, and he holds that Arsenal grit that is surely missing now.
His lack of management in the last 10 years will go against him, and of course his reputation with large numbers of the Arsenal fanbase will forever remain tainted. Still I cannot forget the great he had done for this club.
Well there are five, but to be honest I could have out a few more. These were ones to throw into the ether just to quieten those who continue to spout that there can be no life after Wenger. I left out the likes of Rafa Benitez, Mark Hughes, David Moyes and indeed le prof's chosen successor Dragan Stojkovic. These could easily been entered, but I did not think they could displace the five I have chosen.
So will scream blasphemy for the fact I have even mentioned a dethroning but the truth is if le Boss cannot change his ways, then this is going to be the only outcome.
Arsenal till I die.
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