If Arsene Wenger is going to stay at Arsenal, he will remain on his own terms.
Speaking ahead of Arsenal’s trip to Southampton on Wednesday (Watch live, 3 p.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com) Wenger was asked about whether or not a director of football will be brought in to work with him if he remains in charge of the Gunners beyond the end of this season.
Wenger’s response was defiant as the man who has a contract until this summer will do things his way if he stays.
“I don’t know what director of football means,” Wenger said. “It is somebody who stands in the road and directs play right and left? I don’t understand and I never did understand what it means.”
The Gunners boss was pushed further on his future and possible restructuring at the club but the 67-year-old Frenchman was adamant that if he stays he will continue to make all of the big decisions.
“No, no, no. Sorry, no. I’m not prepared to talk about that,” Wenger said when asked about restructuring. “I’m the manager of Arsenal football club and as long as I’m manager of Arsenal football club I will decide what happens on the technical front. That’s it.”
After 21 years in charge of Arsenal we all know Wenger is stubborn and sticks to his principles, but in recent weeks we have at least seen some flexibility from him from a tactical standpoint and it is working.
The switch to a 3-4-3 formation has seen Arsenal win four of their last five games, reaching the FA Cup final and dragging themselves back into the top four race in the process.
With four games of the Premeir League season to go, Wenger appears to be showing the powers that be that big changes could arrive with him in charge. These comments make it quite clear that Wenger will want to continue calling all the shots otherwise his future at Arsenal is non-existent.
Now it’s over to Ivan Gazidis, Stan Kroenke and Co. as reports have long suggested their preference to bring in someone to help Wenger on a day-to-day basis.
Something has to give and perhaps this is one of the reasons an announcement on Wenger’s future is yet to arrive.