Thursday, June 13, 2024

Wright: ‘Winded’ Wenger could walk in the summer

Ian Wright believes a ‘tired’ and ‘winded’ Arsene Wenger could leave Arsenal at the end of the current season.

Revealing details of a conversation had with his former boss at a private function last night, the ex-Gunner claimed the Frenchman had gone so far as to remark that his time at the Emirates is ‘coming to the end’.

Four defeats in Arsenal’s last nine Premier League games has seen speculation mount that Wenger could walk away from the Emirates when his contract ends in July. So far he’s refused to confirm if an offer to extend his stay has been made by the board and made clear that he won’t make a decision until later this year.

“I get the impression that that’s it,” Wright told BBC Radio 5 Live on Friday. “He looks tired. You just feel that he looks winded. I feel that he will go at the end of the season.”

He added: “He actually mentioned that he is coming to the end. I have never heard him say that before.

“The players have let him down badly.

“If he does leave at the end of the season, there will be a lot of changes. They should have a long, hard look at themselves. He has been so faithful to his team, it has been misplaced.”

In his most recent autobiography ‘A Life in Football’, Wright opened up on his relationship with Wenger, a man he clearly respects very highly. The feeling appears to be mutual.

“One of the best conversations I’ve ever had with him was in Brazil, at the 2014 World Cup, and it made me feel exonerated in respect of speaking about the club. We were in the same hotel and spent a lot of time talking – it was just brilliant but one particular conversation was the best. We were sitting down, having dinner, relaxing over a glass of wine and he said, ‘Ian, there are people who talk about our club, and there are people who used to play for our club, who are very disrespectful. I have no problem with you, because I know that you speak from the heart when you are talking about Arsenal. You care about the club, so you never need to worry about that.'”

The end of an era is certainly on its way, of that there’s no doubt. Whether it’s a case of months or a couple of years, remains to be seen.

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Higihaga

It’s best for all parties if he let’s the board knows he’s stepping down at the end of the season so we can start searching for a replacement. The man Wenger… as a person is still top class as a coach, all sentiments aside is past it.

Neder

There’s no such thing as ‘a replacement’. Once arsene goes, arsenal pretty much start from scratch. Worryingly without a david dein like character on the board. Whatever happens though I’m behind my team. Gunner through and through.

wizardry

Why can’t you be more like the away fans? You make it seem like the club was hurt by the manager when it’s actually vice versa. Loyalty isn’t a weakness.

Ozil's eyes

Still a lot to play for this season.

“start searching”? That’ll be suicide.

Alexis, Atom & Humber

If he intendeds to leave, I think he would probably wait till there is nothing left to play for before he announces it. The man is loyal through and through to arsenal.

Ant

I love you so much arsene. But enough already.

Highberry

I agree there must be change and I also agree that the players have let Arsene down. He hasn’t been like maureen (may his ears turn to arseholes and shit on his shoulders) and castigated players who haven’t delivered, he’S been unfailingly loyal. What is more ANY manager at ANY club who had brought so many honours and so much footballing history would be given the freedom of the city and would be lauded as a true hero. So, yes, there should be change but the man deserves the respect he has truly earned. Let him go with dignity and… Read more »

Corona X

+1 for “may his ears turn to arseholes and shit on his shoulders” 😀

Tribe

I cannot believe my eyes there are no comments about this…

Beezus Fuffoon

Suddenly Arsene Wenger’s end feels closer than ever. Wrighty’s comment about how the players have badly let him down is heartbreaking.

greg

Conversation at a private function should really remain private

If he’s leaving tell the board and let them plan. I don’t believe the nonsense about he was going to walk if we lost the final a few years back to Hull

ClockEndRider

“Revealing details of a conversation had with his former boss at a private function last night, ”
A conversation at a private function. So not an address to be reported?

#aha

Maybe Wenger wanted this info out in the public so that players feel bad and actually work their ass off for Wenger till the end of the season. Also lot of the Wenger out ppl will soften their approach after hearing this.

vicksonthechest

Is it you, Conspiracy Jose?

Miranda

Maybe he wants it out in open so the fans and media will also feel bad for under-appreciating him. This has been his tactic several times in the past. Remember, for instance, how following a period of media criticism and fan discontent he let slip to the press that he’d been offered the job at Real but had turned it down out of loyalty to Arsenal and the goodness of his heart. In my view, if he turned down Real and all the other job offers he’s claimed to have had, it was most likely because he knew he was… Read more »

IamaGoober

Arsene Wenger knows Ian Wright character, he would of 100% known for sure that anything he said in that meeting relating to his Arsenal future was going to come out in the press because Ian was obviously going to say something. And that’s a huge thing for Arsene to say, I can’t recall him ever to of made such comments before, even though its being reported by a third party, but there’s no way Wrighty would make that up. This genuinely could be it… so to end on a quote from my favourite movie of all time, Jurassic Park.. ‘Hold… Read more »

Adam

‘the players have let him down badly’? To some extend – no denying about that, in the grand scheme of things – Arsene is the Manager – a single person solely responsible for the recruitment, training, tactics etc, net fully accountable for the good and bad results delivered. If it indeed is coming to an end I would love to think we are well prepared for the next steps (i know, i know) and will avoid the 6-month long soap opera. Let’s use this time and Arsene’s experience to ensure quality handover, COYG!

James

I hope the players wake up when hearing these news… wenger is at fault for some things but its not all on him either.. we lack passion from many players in our squad

JustBrowsing

Well this has saddened me somewhat, it seems more real reading these comments.
I’ve been a fan for 30 odd years so a life after Wenger will be strange.
I must admit I fluctuate between Wenger in/out, all I know is I just want a different scenario to play out in a season.
But regardless, I have the upmost respect for the man, and what he’s done for our magnificent club.

Goonerforever

I completely understand where you are coming from mate. I too keep switching between Wenger in and out because it’s not his fault that the players let him down at so many crucial times every season. Hearing this news, whether true or not is really sad. I wish him the best for what he has been, is and will be. He is one man who I can hate all I want, but the love and respect transcends all of that.. What a truly great man!

Granit(e) hard!

Best comment on this thread for me and my sentiment is echoed by the number of thumbs up garnered. You sir summed up succinctly how most fans are feeling….the struggle between loyalty and respect to a man who clearly earned and deserve it from fans, and the gut feeling, given recent results that there need to be a change.

And as you summed up nicely, this great man,regardless of how things pan out, deserve nothing less than our utmost respect. I agree with you 100%

GoonerAbroad

I think he should leave, I think he will leave, and I think I will cry when he does

Stillmatic

This basically.

vicksonthechest

You won’t alone, GoonerAbroad.

For me and many others Arsenal fans it will never be the same. Any club that can’t get behind a man who has played such a massive part in its history will show what regard to the men who will follow?

Javis

I believe even the most hardened of Wenger Out’s will give Arsene the most deserved of send off’s if he goes end of season. He’s done incredible things for this club, he’s put his own reputation on the line for the board countless times as well as winning trophies. However it is time to go, everyone reaches a point where they aren’t doing the job they could be, he’s 67 like, that’s retirement age in a regular 9 to 5 job. I’m 36 so Arsene is what I’ve known since I was 16, it will be a sad day but… Read more »

vicksonthechest

It will be some shallow send off from the Wenger Out brigade if anything… They are entitled to behave the way they do, but you can’t insult a man and wish him well at the same time.

clins

exactly. in future wenger’s legacy will not be odd few years without trophys , but the man who took arsenal to new heights. if arsenal will become a top club is future wenger will be the sole reason for that, because he was the one who build the necessary groundwork so that arsenal become a good team like the stadium, the academy a whole fan base . i believe he should go , but for whatever he has done he deserves a statue.

David C

We will miss him. I’m a Wenger fan. I really hope he stays on and becomes Director of Football or takes a seat on the board.

The other part of me suspects he’s going to PSG with Alexis and Ozil…I sure hope I’m wrong.

vicksonthechest

Clean break! His presence will continue to give Kroenke a place to hide, possibly undermine the new bloke and the whiners will continue to moan.

James

Such a shame if it ends this way…
He deserved to go out on a high

Miranda

How else could it end? If he’d wanted to go out on a high he’d have left the year we won the FA cup and his contract was up. But he didn’t, he signed on for another three years precisely because he’d won the FA cup and so presumably was enjoying himself and believed he could do it again. As it turned out he could – one more time – but it had already been ten years since he’d looked capable of winning a major trophy, and abject performances in the CL were evidence of his declining powers, with other,… Read more »

Billy Enfield

I have been a Wenger In till last season. For years we’ve been sold the story “You need to spend the amounts of Chelski/Shity, in order to win PL”… And I tried my best to understand as my love for Arsenal FC has no boundaries. But last season, Leicester taught us a lesson… No need for huge amounts of money, You can buy the likes of Mahrez for £500K and win the PL. Arsene, you’ve been probably the best manager ever, but leave your seat before you destroy your legacy. Decent human being, but not the Invincible’s Manager any longer.… Read more »

gunnertron

It happened with Star Wars and now with Arsenal.

Sean

JJ Abrams is going to be the next manager? 😉

Dawn

I don’t think AW would leave the club in the lurch. I think he will give at least a years notice.

vicksonthechest

It will be a herculean task to keep working when he’s continuously reminded that he is not needed here. Also ‘lurch’ is subjective. You have to think that any new manager who comes in no matter how good the circumstances will have an acclimatizing period.

Simon

No, no, no, no, no fucking no.

I maintain that if it wasn’t for the sugar daddy owners that we would have won three more titles since the last at least. For me, Arsene is still the best man for the job.

Zelig

Well said. Utd, City, Chelsea all spend more on players & wages than Arsenal so as the fourth highest spenders finishing 4th is expected & finishing any higher is a bonus. Wenger has done this consistently every season while encouraging attacking football.

Yes Leicester bucked that trend last year & finished above Arsenal but they also finished above utd, city & Chelsea.

4thPlace

I would think it does not matter if some of the Wenger outs crowds show him respect when he leaves. They show him none when he is here now. The season has not gone to plan and everyone is disappointed. The narrative that Arsene must leave even if it means we spend the next few seasons losing games, out of the top 4, out of the Champs League or trophyless because eventually all that will change is one I cannot understand. There is no guarantee of that. The scenario has played out at Liverpool and now ManUtd. Whatever else the… Read more »

Gooniskey

Well said.

Billy Enfield

@ Simon. How is he still “the best man for the job”??? The man is completely tactically inept. In the last 12 years, we’ve been watching the same movie but expecting different ending to it. He’s way too soft on players. Arsene’s big problem is that he hates change (of tactics, personnel, etc). But arguably his biggest weakness is his naivety and abundance of faith in his players. Time and time again they’ve let him down and never, he has pulled a Fergie on any of them. The Scott (like him or loath him) sat his underperforming players for weeks… Read more »

Make mine a Swiss miss

Being completely tactically inept isn’t even his biggest weakness?
Even little Timmy wasn’t completely tactically inept.
And people say Arsenal fans aren’t reasonable

Billy Enfield

I see you’ve got plenty of intelligence and opinions… Why don’t you express yours, instead of passing mockery comments to the other people opinions?

Xhaka Demus, no Pliers

I hope he leaves in the summer because I think he deserves better. I’m just as frustrated as the next fan but I’m also sick of the sense of entitlement that has developed in elements of the fan base.

Terry Barry

It will be the end for me if he goes. No more watching the Arsenal.

He transcends the club – it is his football that I am loyal to.

I know he wouldn’t agree with me nor would thousands of others but for me there’s only one Arsene Wenger.

It will be a very sad day when the season ends – let’s get behind the team and enjoy the last hurrah! We will never see his like again.

He is the reason I support the Arsenal.

COYG

Javis

But he’s going at some point regardless so what will you do?

Stillmatic

COYG?
Don’t you mean COW? Come On Wenger?
You don’t seem to be an actual fan of the club, but the man, like many are. Strange. I get it, but I hope you can see how strange it is.

As for Wenger? Personally i’d prefer he stayed as DoF to work with someone who could benefit from him but not feel overruled by him.

vicksonthechest

Why is it strange!? For millions Arsene Wenger has defined Arsenal, personified it. He has been a unique footballing personality over decades – as much for his ‘flaws’ as merits. People here brandishing no of years spent supporting and STs as a sign of superiority are out of sync with what a force Arsenal actually is around the world. I have grown up watching Wenger shape Arsenal and it is his philosophy and style that drew me to Arsenal in the first place. I can’t say I will not support Arsenal anymore, the love for the club is not limited… Read more »

rohit

Like Lucas has said in another comment, it’s very different for fans from other countries than for local fans, my friend. Some of us fell in love with Arsenal purely because of the club’s football philosophy and its class and both are personified by Wenger, instilled by him. Unfortunately, in today’s world, a club’s philosophies and moral code change with its manager; look at United – how many times have they changed their way of football and their way of managing the media in last 5 years? I hope my beloved Arsenal doesn’t fall into the same loop and instead… Read more »

vicksonthechest

Most of the fans want a major title at any costs. Anything less is a ‘failure.’ That needs to be paid for in blood. Chelsea, despite having the identity of a skunk, helmed by a dozen different managers with vastly different philosophies, find loyal supporters. Why? Because they win. Look at Leicester now. Dortmund even. Who cares for them these days? Pep and Klopp (two of the much coveted names among Arsenal fans) are under phenomenal pressure despite having been around just one single season AND having their teams play fantastic football. Over in Spain, legends like Luis Enrique and… Read more »

Ozenal

I think it is pretty unprecedented for a club to name a replacement or state that a manager is stepping down during a season. However not sorting out a contract with a long serving manager in his last season with a club has a precedent. The players are affected. And not sure why people are complaining that they should sort out a replacement manager already etc… Why would a club make it known? Just puts the incoming manager under the gun or in a strong bargaining position. Not to mention all the upheaval in the team worse than it is… Read more »

Ozenal

Edit: oh the one person who you can guarantee cares about the club in all this forthcoming media maelstrom will of course be mr wenger.

Godfrey Twatschloch

The PL may be gone now but we can still take the FA Cup. That would be a more than decent send off for him should it coincide with him handing in his notice.

Let’s make that happen either way!

Lucas

I became a fan of arsenal since 2009. I was never bothered to watch club football before. What made me fall in love with the team is their philosophy and their class, mainly instilled by Wenger. The selfsufficient way of running the club, the constant promotion of youngsters, their reluctance to dive (unlike some other teams full of cunts), etc… Not to forget the beautiful football we get to see. It fills me with sadness to see him leave. I will forever be gratefull to him for he made fall in love with the beautifull game (in my eyes the… Read more »

Gooniskey

Very depressing reading through the many angry know all, “my arsenal, we deserve better” and insulting comments that have become more common… a big club driven forward with class to become a huge worldwide club, spoiled by our most succesful years delivered in the most fantastic style, by a man who changed the game… The others copied, caught up and some overtook in terms of recent success, whether it be by means of “buying the league” or employing mangers who could win the beautiful game in an ugly way, or both (last year an exception)… all achieved through years we… Read more »

Adam

Absolutely love and have the upmost respect for the man but the timing does seem right. As a 21 year old I’ve never known anything different, and have been spoilt as a result, so it will be absolutely bizarre when he does go. Here’s hoping he goes on a high.

Adam

hi Adam, cool name! Shall we agree you will post as Cool Adam and i will stay with my just Adam? Vice versa works good for me as well.

kaius

Or he could stay with Adam and you could take Eve?

Eve

Im in!

David Boyle

If that’s true it’s fantastic news. Bring in simeone and start winning trophies again

StuckInTheWire

What would make you think we will start to win trophies when Wenger leaves?? Not history, clearly, since he’s by far our most successful manager. Not the set up of the league either, given there are 3-4 clubs who can massively outspend us every year in England alone, courtesy of dirty money. And that there are 2 or 3 top quality managers at our rivals already. And that the spending power of those beneath us has increased due to the TV money. Not the fact we’re guaranteed to get in a top drawer manager either, since many are unavailable and… Read more »

Chamakh

Allegri is probably available and he has experience of taking over a big club and even improving them.

vicksonthechest

Scolari to Chelsea, Capello to England, Juande Ramos to Spuds, Van Gaal to Man Utd. Big names with great experience who seemed like good fits. You know what happened. I’m not saying there is no one better than Wenger out there, just that there is no guarantee we will find him / he will be available in the first attempt.

And lest we forget Chelsea fans screaming when Benitez took over their club. May we be spared a Jose or a Redknapp or an Allerderci. That’ll just be too much for this poor soul.

Chamakh

I agree with your point that there is no guarantee that we will even finish in top 4 with another manager. But we won’t win the PL with wenger either. That is the choice you have to make. He will leave soon in any case so your argument doesn’t really work. Even the most objective observers must admit that we have kind of stagnated during the last 2 years and we have a terrible statistic against the other top 6 teams. That Will have to change if we want to win something. Massive respect for the guy and how he… Read more »

Zelig

Arsene Wenger is available. He has experience of managing a big club and improving them.

Giroud's Buldge

wow you are a genius

Rohith J

For Wenger’s own sake, I hope he retires because this scenario has happened way too often for it to be referees, injuries or money, it is structural. I love Wenger, I don’t think anyone will have problems with what he has done for Arsenal in particular and English football in general. I hope he makes the right decision and the club is prepared for the transition.

Ex-Priest Tobin

On the day he steps down, I personally will be cracking open a fine bottle of wine to celebrate. Respect for what he has done in the past, yes, but he’s already been given a lot of accolades and made an insane amount of money. What matters is the here and now, and at the moment he is failing.

Make mine a Swiss miss

To celebrate having someone new to whine about?

bdotm

He is class. And so is Arsenal. Whatever happens, the next appointment should be someone who would make us proud to be Arsenal fans regardless of results on the pitch. Such an intelligent man. Will surely come to an end one day but I pray not this summer except of course we win the cup double. Arsene deserves to leave with a bang and big ears would be a good way to sign off. Come on Arsene, Come on Arsenal. We can do this

Lula da Gilberto

Feel the same way about Wrighty. He cares so disagreements are usually fine.

And can’t help but feel for Wenger. Let’s not forget, we’ve all been badly winded from time to time. Garlic does it for me.

manaabh

People saying no they dont want him go but one or two games loose you ll see banners saying enough is enough!!haha

santori

Ian Wright has been wrong soooo many times just saying.

He’s not the most clued up with the club either.

😉

GOON

I think many Arsenal fans would be OK with him leaving. I just hope the club modernises and I hope Wenger is behind the restructuring, that will turn out to be one of the most important things he will have done for the club. Can I just say that Arsene is like my dad and watching him leave will be like watching my parents divorce. Whomever replaces him must have the same calmness with players.

Dave

Best for everyone him, the club and fans. He done such great things that will never be repeated for the club, and although i think he should go and have gone for a couple of years (after last fa cup win). Doesn’t deserve some of the vile abuse he is getting. The club needs new ideas, and the players need a huge kick up the ass as neither seem to be able to push things forward. And because getting top 4 was acceptable for so long I don’t think no matter what Arsene does is gonna be able to change… Read more »

Frankie

It’s the player that have let us down….. Not Wenger…… Ffs. Let wenger d4cide when he wants to go he deserves that for his year of turning us in to a real top club…

The players need to step up and prove there not mediocre

Chamakh

It is wenger who has brought them here and sets out the tactics so he is always partly responsible. I like wenger but it seems his time is coming to an end, can’t see us improving if he stayed for next season. He has build a good squad for someone else to take over. Huge respect for the man but he has to go sometime

Who needs money when we got feathers?

Getting on too many opinions from pundits on this one. Arsene will let us know

Chamakh

Mixed feelings (if this is true) as Wenger doesn’t really get the respect he deserves but at the same time can’t see us improving and winning a big title with him. He had this and last season to prove he can win the PL and while the seasons haven’t been that bad you would have expected us to challenge all the way. A lot of his success and failure go to the fact that he gives so much trust to players like Walcott who fail to deliver when it matters. We are a bit soft as a club and maybe… Read more »

shokim

Since the PL title is pretty much out of our hands now, we have it all to play for in the CL and FA Cup. Hopefully the players don’t let Wenger down anymore. If it’s really the boss’s last season, all the more he should go out on a high than in a whimper, imho.

Arsesupport

Just as football has changed over the years so have fans. Why can we not show some class and unite for however long he has left, we might still get something from this season, we know he’s leaving soon let’s Respect him as he makes his way out of our club the club he loves so much. Change is coming we all know that but let’s see the great man off Whether this season or next in the right way. Coyg

Momozemio

Don’t know how to feel about this one… “players have let him down badly” are not Arsene but Ian’s words… “he’s coming to an end” can also mean that he thinks a lot about it and that it’s geting closer every day… Who wouldn’t be tired after such a hard run since boxing day ? Would Arsene express that so publicly just before a game rather than to the board ? I don’t get it and putting appart my feelings for the man and what he has achieved for this club (and english football), I just feel something sounds wrong.… Read more »

Zelig

Seems like the next manager will be given the 4th largest budget in the league but expected to still win the league & if he manages to do that then he’ll be expected to outperform other bigger spending clubs in Europe & win the champions league.

Good luck finding that next manager. Maybe the Wenger out brigade should just go support Manchester Utd or Real Madrid if only finishing first will do.

bubs

Why is he commenting about a conversation he had at a private function, fuelling speculation that isn’t particularly helpful?

Indiegooner

Them damned onion cutting ninjas 🙁

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