Getty Images

Arsene Wenger signs new two-year contract with Arsenal

1 Comment

It’s finally official. Arsene Wenger is staying at Arsenal.

The long-time Gunners boss signed a new two-year contract this week after months of speculation over whether he would stay or go as his last contract ran down. The news extends Wenger’s stay at Arsenal through 2019, and if he stays until the end of his latest contract, Wenger will certainly manage the most games in Premier League history.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s PL coverage ]

“I love this club and I am looking forward to the future with optimism and excitement,” Wenger said in a statement. “We are looking at what we do well and how we can be stronger everywhere. This is a strong group of players and with some additions we can be even more successful. We’re committed to mounting a sustained league challenge and that will be our focus this summer and next season.

“I am grateful to have the support of the board and Stan (Kroenke, Arsenal majority owner) in doing everything we can to win more trophies. It’s what we all want and I know it’s what our fans around the world demand.”

Wenger is coming off a disappointing season for the Gunners as they finished out of the Premier League’s top four for the first time in Wenger’s 20-year stay in North London, meaning an end to Arsenal’s consistent stay in the UEFA Champions League.

Arsenal won its last 5 games of the season before securing the club’s 13th FA Cup title but it was too late to recover from a dreadful February and March. Arsenal were pummeled 10-2 on aggregate by Bayern Munich in the Champions League Round of 16 and Arsenal went on a five-game spell where it lost four games.

Wenger admitted earlier in May that the lack of answers over his contract situation led to a “very difficult environment” for the players, adding that the psychological environment of the group was “absolutely horrendous.”

For Arsenal fans, this news only serves to disappoint the growing “Wenger Out” portion of the fan base, although there are still a majority of fans who support Wenger and will welcome the news.

However, it’s undeniably that Arsenal have failed to achieve the fan’s expectations since Arsenal’s invincible’s era ended around 2006. Since that time, Arsenal has won the FA Cup three times but has failed to win the Premier League and has been bounced in the Champions League Round of 16 for seven consecutive seasons.

It’s unclear if Arsene Wenger can guide the team back into the top four of the Premier League but based on his track record, the odds are in his favor for bringing Arsenal back into Europe’s top continental competition.

The next big questions for Arsenal are whether the club can hold on to two of its attacking stars, Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil, who have both been rumored with a move away from the Emirates Stadium. Once their futures are determined, then it will be interesting to see how much Wenger has to spend this summer to bolster his squad, particularly in defense and at holding midfield.

Six Premier Leaguers named to Argentina, but no Icardi

Epsilon/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Argentina’s World Cup roster features a number of the usual suspects, particularly up front, but Serie A’s top goalscorer has been surprisingly left off the list of 23.

[ MORE: Belgium goes to World Cup without Nainggolan ]

Manager Jorge Sampaoli’s squad was made official on Monday, which includes the likes of Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero and Gonzalo Higuain.

The Albiceleste won’t be taking Inter Milan striker Mauro Icardi though, which has raised some questions about the decision.

Icardi led all scorers in Italy’s top flight this season, scoring 29 goals in 34 Serie A matches, while Paulo Dybala edged out the final striker spot in the Argentina squad.

Dybala is teammates with Higuain at Italian giants Juventus.

Meanwhile, six Premier League players were named into the South American nation’s squad, including goalkeepers Sergio Romero (Man United) and Willy Caballero (Chelsea), as well as Nicolas Otamendi (Man City), Marcos Rojo (Man United) and Manuel Lanzini (West Ham).

Men in Blazers POD: FA Cup recap, UCL final preview and more

Catherine Ivill/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Rog and Davo recap a spite-fueled, snear-filled, peak Phil Jones FA Cup Final, preview this weekend’s Champions League tilt between Liverpool and Real Madrid and eulogize Big Sam… gone the opposite of too soon. Plus, World Cup rosters and MLS.

All of the MiB content — pods, videos and stories can be seen here, but to really stay in touch, follow, subscribe, click here:

Subscribe to the podcast OR to update your iTunes subscriptions ]

Click here for the RSS feed ]

Long-term absentee Santi Cazorla will leave Arsenal

Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Santi Cazorla hasn’t played a match for the Gunners since suffering a gruesome Achilles injury back in October 2016.

[ MORE: No World Cup for Spanish Chelsea trio ]

And unfortunately for the Spaniard, Cazorla won’t feature for Arsenal again after six years at the Emirates Stadium.

Arsenal released a statement on Monday revealing the veteran midfielder won’t return to the club in 2018/19, which isn’t unexpected given the extent of his injury.

In his time with the Gunners, Cazorla made 180 appearances in all competitions for the club, and helped Arsenal win two FA Cups.

Cazorla was also a member of the Spanish national team squads that won back-to-back UEFA EURO competitions in 2008 and 2012.

Wolfsburg keeps Bundesliga spot with playoff win

Leave a comment

Wolfsburg managed a 1-0 win (4-1 on aggregate) over Holstein Kiel on Monday in the second leg of its German promotion playoff as the Bundesliga side kept its place in the top flight.

Robin Knoche scored the game-winner in the second leg, which ensured Wolfsburg’s stay in the Bundesliga ahead of the 2017/18 season.

The hosts boasted a number of quality chances in the first half, including David Kinsombi’s close-range shot that tested Wolfsburg keeper Koen Casteels with a save, however, Holstein couldn’t break through.

U.S. Men’s National Team defender John Brooks went the full 90 minutes for Wolfsburg, after the 25-year-old made nine starts this season for the German side in league play.