Whoever takes the helm as Arsenal’s next manager will have to do some math gymnastics this summer to stretch every penny available.
According to a report from The Telegraph, Arsenal is giving Arsene Wenger‘s successor a little less than $70 million to work with in this summer’s transfer market, citing back-to-back transfer windows with club-record signings (Alexandre Lacazette last summer and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in January) and three raises given to players. Arsenal paid around $78 million alone to sign Aubameyang and around $65 million for Lacazette.
[READ: UCL Preview: Liverpool vs. Roma]
That means whoever comes in next to lead Arsenal will likely have to sell one or two players this summer to raise additional money for world-class signings.
For the last decade, Arsenal has been crying out for a new pair of centerbacks and a holding midfielder in the mould of Patrick Vieira. In addition, with Petr Cech getting older, the prospect of needing a new goalkeeper is also on the horizon.
Luckily for Arsenal, they seem to be just fine up front. From Aubameyang and Lacazette to Mesut Ozil, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Aaron Ramsey, the club has the talent to challenge for a title next season in that department.
A dozen different names have been bandied about as to who will be Arsenal’s next manager, with out-of-contract and former Barcelona manager Luis Enrique reportedly on the shortlist. Vieira, former Arsenal midfielder Mikel Arteta, Germany National Team coach Joachim Low, Juventus boss Max Allegri and Hoffenheim’s Julian Nagelsman have all also been linked with the job.
Robbie Mustoe and Robbie Earle discuss the shock news of Arsene Wenger announcing he will stand down at the end of the season and celebrate the living legend’s career, while also exploring who will take this massive job, then finish up talking about the FA Cup semifinal results.
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Arsene Wenger doesn’t seem like the type to go on a victory lap, but the Arsenal boss is handling his resignation and the accompanying praise with pure class.
[ RECAP: Arsenal 4-1 West Ham ]
Wenger announced the end of his long Arsenal tenure earlier this week, and has been met by heaps of praise from ex-players, fans, current Gunners, and even rivals.
The Frenchman addressed the plaudits following a 4-1 win over West Ham United at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday. From the BBC:
“I would like to thank everyone who has been very nice and kind and praised me more than I deserved it. I would like to say thank you everyone. It’s been a great period for me and I’m thankful for that.”
Arsenal punished West Ham after the Irons equalized through Marko Arnautovic, getting a lucky goal from Aaron Ramsey and two fine finishes from Alexandre Lacazette in the win.
“I was focused on winning the game. We just tried to be professional and do our job even when the circumstances are different. It was a good team spirit and good preparation for Thursday.
“I think we constructed patiently. We didn’t make big mistakes. First of all before winning a trophy, you need to get through the semi-finals. This is a good way to prepare – scoring goals against a strong West Ham team who have done well recently.”
Next up: A huge test in the UEFA Europa League semifinals, with Atletico Madrid visiting for Thursday’s first leg. Wenger rested several big names, and Atleti has just one win from its last four matches (including a Madrid Derby draw at the Bernabeu).
- Monreal scores fifth of season
- Arnautovic answers
- Lacazette thunders home beauty
Aaron Ramsey‘s hopeful cross turned into a match-winning goal as Arsenal beat West Ham United 4-1 at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.
Substitute striker Alexandre Lacazette scored a beautiful insurance goal en route to a brace for Arsenal, who moves four points clear of Burnley in the race for sixth. West Ham is six points clear of the drop zone with four matches to play.
Nacho Monreal gave Arsenal a lead and Marko Arnautovic equalized to set the stage for the winner, a ball unclaimed by neither Declan Rice nor Joe Hart.
[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]
Arsenal had almost all of the ball, but a slip in defense forced Gunners goalkeeper David Ospina to make a nice parry on Marko Arnautovic’s shot from the right of the box.
Nacho Monreal caused a West Ham turnover deep in West Ham territory, and found Danny Welbeck for a hard shot that bounded wide of the far post.
Granit Xhaka was saved in his 35th minute free kick bid and Welbeck couldn’t get on top of a Hector Bellerin cross to head home less than a minute later.
[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]
[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]
Monreal put Arsenal ahead in the 51st minute with a low finish past Joe Hart off a corner kick, but the lead didn’t last much more than 10 minutes.
Cheikhou Kouyate‘s shot was blocked to Manuel Lanzini, who quickly fed Arnautovic for a finish.
Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker has made 220 appearances for the club, all with one man in charge of the Gunners: Arsene Wenger.
[ MORE: The latest Arsene Wenger news ]
Mertesacker has won three FA Cups with Wenger, and he took up his pen — or laptop — for Sunday’s Matchday program.
The 33-year-old German says it’s down to Arsenal’s players to send off Wenger right: With two more successful rounds in the UEFA Europa League against Atletico Madrid and either Red Bull Salzburg or Marseille. From the BBC:
“We were only informed on Friday about the manager’s decision to step down at the end of the season, so it’s still quite emotional,” Mertesacker said.
“He’s been the major figure of this club for more than 20 years. He’s been so impressive for me and he has trusted me so much throughout my career, in bringing me here and making me captain even when I was injured. He also gave me a future role here at the club so I am very grateful and humbled for the opportunity he gave to me.
“There’s now an emphasis on us doing it for him too. We want to give him the send-off he deserves: with a cup.”
The French legend to end his time at Arsenal against Marseille would be delightful, don’t you think?