Arsene Wenger reportedly has a chance to be on the sidelines at the 2022 World Cup as a manager.
Looking to hire a big name in the soccer world, the Qatar soccer establishment has turned its attention to the former Arsenal boss to lead Qatar into its first World Cup, according to France Football. The report states that Wenger has long been on the Qatari shortlist, either as a sporting director for Paris Saint-Germain, a club owned by Qataris, or to take over the Qatar National Team.
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If given the job, Wenger would also reportedly play a large role in youth development across the oil-and-gas-rich nation.
Since leaving Arsenal at the end of May, Wenger has been without a job, spending time in his native France while waiting by the phone, presumably. Wenger’s name has circulated around many of Europe’s top clubs when there has been a change in manager, but the 69-year-old has yet to sign with a new club.
The report by France Football says it’s unknown yet how Wenger will respond to the Qatari approach. If he joins, it will be his first foray into National Team football after more than three decades as a club coach.
As Unai Emery sorts the pieces at Arsenal, the club’s legendary boss is reportedly hoping to do the same for another European giant.
Arsene Wenger is hopeful that Bayern Munich will look its way should the Bavarians choose to part ways with new coach Niko Kovac early in its campaign, and Bild reports that Bayern is considering just that.
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Bayern is nine points back of first place Borussia Dortmund and even two behind Kovac’s former side, Eintracht Frankfurt, after 12 matches of the Bundesliga season.
The latest setback at the Allianz Arena, a 3-3 draw to newly-promoted Fortuna Dusseldorf after holding leads of 2-0 and 3-1, has many thinking Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge could make a change.
Wenger last managed a club not named Arsenal in 1996 when we led Japanese side Nagoya Grampus Eight. Before that, he led Monaco and Nancy.
How would Wenger fare at a side like Bayern? It’s difficult to imagine he’d struggle given that the club’s defensive players are quite good, with Mats Hummels and Joshua Kimmich among those who are not the reason the Bavarians aren’t winning matches like they should.
Unai Emery has said what anyone and everyone who watched Arsenal at any point during the final few years of Arsene Wenger‘s tenure observed: the club had lost its way under the legendary Frenchman and needed a drastic refresh.
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Emery feels he’s managed to do just that in a very short time — his first three months on the job — and sees the club already headed in the right direction. Particularly, it was the balance of attacking and defending that Emery noted wasn’t quite right, which undoubtedly came down to the mentality of the club and its players — quotes from the Guardian:
“I met once with him, and little else. I respect him a lot but no matter how much info he gave me, I had to change things. I told the players, ‘We started at kilometer zero.’ Even now, four months later, I still say it, ‘We are in the beginning.”
“Over time, only technical quality and offensive freedom were taken care of, and the team lost the defensive structure. What I want is to unite both essences and be more competitive. The Arsenal was in decline. We had to stop it and start climbing.”
Arsene Wenger turned down a chance to return to the Premier League, as he vowed, as one of three managers chased by Fulham before deciding on Claudio Ranieri.
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The Telegraph claims that Wenger was joined by former Monaco boss Leonardo Jardim and well-traveled former Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas as candidates pursued by Fulham in a bid to replace Slavisa Jokanovic.
From The Telegraph:
They included Wenger and both Jardim, who recently left Monaco after winning the French title two years ago when he also led them to the Champions League semi-finals and is being considered by a number Premier League clubs, and former Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur manager Villas-Boas. It is understood that all three managers politely declined the opportunity to speak to Fulham.
The 41-year-old Villas-Boas had twice managed London clubs in the Premier League, faring better with Spurs than Chelsea.
He would have been an interesting hire, though Ranieri could be a stroke of genius; Both are players managers, though Ranieri is a bit more of a friendly leader than the fiery Jokanovic.
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.