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Wenger won’t manage in England, still supporting Arsenal

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Former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger maintains that he’ll be back managing in 2019, though it will “certainly not” be in England.

“I have dedicated my whole life to one club,” Wenger said, via the BBC. “It would be difficult and not well accepted.”

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The legendary manager, 69, has been linked with a role at Paris Saint-Germain, but prefers to take up a familiar touch line role.

Wenger also told the BBC that he is happy things are running smoothly under Unai Emery, and that he remains a big supporter of all things Arsenal.

“When I can watch I am an Arsenal supporter and I am happy when Arsenal win and unhappy when they don’t win.”

Arsenal hosts Blackpool in the League Cup today before hosting Liverpool on Saturday. The Gunners are atop their Europa League group, and boast a 7W-1D-2L record in the Premier League.

Henry prepares for first Monaco match, cites Guardiola, Wenger

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Thierry Henry in the role of manager is an intriguing endeavor.

The “star player becomes the star instructor” is a tall ask across many sports. For every Pep Guardiola or even Zinedine Zidane, there’s a boatload of Ruud Gullits and Diego Maradonas (Well there’s really only one Maradona, but we digress).

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Henry, by all accounts and the proverbial smell test, seems the kind of mind who can make it happen for himself. The new AS Monaco boss helped Roberto Martinez organize Belgium to a strong World Cup run, and has been selective about his first coaching opportunity.

And, hey, he served as a pretty decent mentor for Alex Hunter in FIFA 18.

Now he takes over a Monaco team with nowhere to go but up, and that hasn’t happened too often in the club’s celebrated history (though Monaco was relegated to Ligue 2 for two seasons from 2011-13).

Taking his first prematch media day ahead of Monaco’s trip to Strasbourg, Henry pointed to two of his managers as guides on his way: Pep Guardiola and Arsene Wenger.

To be fair, Henry’s praise for Guardiola was much loftier considering he arrived at Barcelona after playing for Wenger at Arsenal:

“Pep is the reference, for me,” said Henry. “The invention he had in the game; he’s well ahead of the game. … We learnt how to play the game when I went to Barcelona under him. With Pep you can talk about the game; he will not even go to sleep and will still talk about the game, you will fall asleep and he’s still talking.”

Henry credits Wenger with awakening the professional inside of him.

“Arsene unlocked a lot of stuff in my mind, made me understand what it was to be a professional, what it was to perform,” Henry said.

A lot of managers look to Guardiola and Wenger as examples, but Henry played for both. Considering the two are likely still in his list of contacts, this can only bode well for 18th place Monaco as it looks to embark on a run up the Ligue 1 table and its Champions League group table.

Wenger: I want to return to management in January

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Arsene Wenger could be back to barking orders from the sideline once the calendar flips to 2019.

In an interview with German publication BILD, Wenger admitted that he’s received job offers all over the world and aims to return in January. Wenger hinted as well at his future, stating he was open to either international or club management.

Wenger has been without a job since parting ways with Arsenal at the end of last season, a second successive in which the club finished outside the top four.

Even with his disappointing end to life at Arsenal, it’s clear Wenger is still passionate and ready to coach again in the future. Come January, there will likely be a few Premier League openings as well as opportunities in other leagues (AC Milan? Bayern Munich? Real Madrid?). However, most of the domestic options would see Wenger take over a team likely in a relegation battle, something Wenger doesn’t really have experience with. In addition, outside of Mexico and U.S. Soccer’s ongoing coaching search, it’s unlikrly there will be a major national team opening come January.

Wenger previously said would make up his mind about his future in September, but since missing his deadline he’s continued to move the date back. Perhaps a year away will fully rejuvenate the wise manager.

Report: PSG want Wenger for front office role

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The rumors linking Arsene Wenger with Paris Saint-Germain are back, only this time it’s with a different role.

Content with new manager Thomas Tuchel on the sidelines, PSG are reportedly considering hiring Arsene Wenger as the team’s general manager after the upcoming January transfer window. The ESPN report states that PSG is not happy with current general manager Antero Henrique and could fire him in January, creating a potential opening from Wenger.

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It would be Wenger’s first non-coaching position in soccer since retiring as a player in 1981.

Wenger said in September that he would wait until the end of the month to make up his mind about his future, but that deadline has come and gone, and the latest report now states he won’t decide on his future until Christmas time.

Looking deeper, it would be a curious appointment. In recent years, Arsene Wenger isn’t exactly known for his shrewd transfer business, having waited too long to bring in some players while actually signing some that turned out to be busts. Perhaps PSG is looking to tap into Wenger’s wide network of coaches and sporting directors across the world, and they’ll let business staff take care of the negotiation aspect of the deals.

An end to away goals? Wenger, Emery, Mourinho among those proposing

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Some of UEFA’s biggest names in management are asking the confederation to eliminate the away goals rule and bring about an earlier transfer window deadline for all clubs.

The Premier League closed its transfer window before the season began, but Spain, Germany, and France all took their business deep into August.

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The away goals rule has been in place for better than a half-century, but managers argued that easier travel and progress in the game make it less of an advantage.

UEFA deputy general secretary Giorgio Marchetti said the confederation will review both ideas. From the BBC:

“The coaches think that scoring goals away is not as difficult as it was in the past. They think the rule should be reviewed and that’s what we will do.”

Who led the charge? Arsenal’s Unai Emery and Manchester United’s Jose Mourinho were among the coaches on hand, with Arsene Wenger, Max Allegri, Julen Lopetegui, Carlos Ancelotti, and Thomas Tuchel some of the others.

How would it have changed last season’s Champions League? Home teams may’ve attacked with more abandoned, with away teams bunkering down. The score lines rarely finish level, anyway, but home stadia want to see their sides with every intention of scoring as many goals as possible. This would help that.

Barcelona-Roma and Shakhtar Donetsk-Roma were the only knockout round matches to end deadlocked on goals last season, with Roma advancing on both counts.