Monday, May 20, 2024

Former Gunner hints at coaching shake-up as reason for Wenger delay

Despite the best efforts of the press to convince Arsene Wenger to tell them of his intentions regarding a new contract, the Arsenal manager was not forthcoming at his press conference yesterday.

They tried and they tried, but the Frenchman was giving nothing away, despite saying he was clear in his own mind what he wanted to do.

He did say, however, “It’s a subject that at the moment is not sorted completely out.”

What could that mean? Well, former Gunner Perry Groves appeared on this week’s Arsecast, and he had a theory as to why that might be.

He was asked for his reading of the situation, and said, “To be fair, I don’t why – if Arsene is clear in his own mind – why he doesn’t let everyone know as soon as possible as it takes away the uncertainty and instability.

“I actually think the longer it goes on – and I could be wrong – the more likely he is to sign a new contract.

“It just makes me wonder if there’s another announcement they’re going to make in conjunction with him saying that he’s going to say.

“Whether it’s a change in the coaching staff, whether they say they’re going to release a lot of funds for him to spend next year, because they know it’s going to be a split amongst Arsenal fans.

“It just makes me think they might be making another announcement along with it.”

Asked if that was, perhaps, the appointment of a Director of Football, Groves continued, “A change to the coaching staff, because it needs to be a bit more hands on.

“I wouldn’t want to put a name to it, but if it’s a 6’4 dominant central midfield player who used to play for us and lead us by example. Who has been coaching over in American and has decided he wants to come back … that sort of person.

“Not mentioning any names though!”

You can listen to today’s Arsecast below.


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Paddy Vieira

Diaby is coming back?


Username checks out

Pauly bravo

Dont be ridiculous, he’s in france. It’s a typo. It’s 4ft 6″ David Hillier.


Excellent work! ?

Joe Baker

Thanks Paddy, I needed a laugh today


Vieira woah oh oh oh – yes please!


I’ve thought about this a lot and this is my conclusion: He’s currently managing NYCFC and once most coaches have made the step forward to being manager, they rarely make the step back to being a coach. Our window to bring him in as a coach was more than 5 years ago. The logical thing would be to bring him in as a new manager, and we can all agree, even if he wins everything in the MLS, that still doesn’t qualify as enough experience to be the man that replaces Arsene Wenger. We need a big figure like an… Read more »


Bringing back Paddy would arguably be the most significant back room change since Dein left. Almost impossible to imagine.

John C

There are a number of reasons he hasn’t announced what he’s doing yet but i’d guess they are either:

1. He hasn’t got the balls to say he’s staying because the results are so shit and is waiting for the next win to come along first


2. He’s going and they’re trying to tie up his successor


I’m hoping it’s just a smokescreen and we’re lining up Allegri.
We need some freshness.
I think we need shot of Kroenke and the board as well


Allegri alone without a sporting director would be a huge a failure. He can’t handle the roles Wenger has been. Simple as. The guy doesn’t even speak English. I’m reading a great book called “How a little planning beats a lot of firefighting” and I completely agree with the narrative.

Bringing Allegri without addressing the real issues is setting him up for failure. We need to make changes behind the scenes before we change our manager so we can give the manager the best chance of succeeding.


That was the mistake united did when they got Moyes. Fergie’s who team left when he did and that left a huge hole to be filled by little Moyes.

I know Wenger out fans have had enough, I get that but there’s no rush here, I’d rather take an extra year and get the appointment right for long term success rather than just make rash emotional decisions (which I don’t think the board will do).

Crash Fistfight

Re: reason 1, I don’t think it’s because he’s scared, but rather he thinks the results will turn around soon and everyone will be skipping along hand-in-hand, dancing under rainbows and drinking from rivers made of chocolate.

He doesn’t seem to understand that people are pissed off because the same thing is happening year after year after year and that people aren’t just fickle half-wits that are easily influenced by the tabloid media and moronic ex-footballer pundits on TV.

John C

If he’s decided to stay then yes, it’s because he’s scared of the fan’s reaction in light of the current results. As you say he doesn’t grasp what the fans are upset about, which is the slow decline of the club and continued and repetitive failures. He thinks it’s a short term reaction to current results, it which case he’s very wrong. I definitely agree he’s waiting for results to pick up. I’d don’t think they will as we look like a team that’s out of ideas and we have the look of a boxer who’s down on points in… Read more »

Alan Pardew\'s Peaches and Pear Emporium

The man is almost 70 with over 30 years of experience in football management, I doubt he’s scared of people carrying bed sheets with ‘Wexit’ on them and a plane. You’ll probably find that he’s been advised not to say anything which is why he hasn’t so far, despite the media trying to goad him into it.

John C

I think he’s fully aware of the reaction he’d get if he announced it amongst the current run of form. I don’t mean he’s scared for his personally safety but definitely the heightened toxic atmosphere it’ll create.


Arsenal touches Real Madrid and Manchester United in terms of revenue….

Brand new stadium, improved world class facilities, recognised brand of football, millions fans worldwide….

Wish all ‘declines’ were like that….

I think you use the word wrongly. If you want to say that they aint winning as much trophies as you were personally expecting them to, then thats a different discussion.

But for gods sake…dont call modern Arsenal a decline, seriously. It makes me doubt the intelligence of our fans.

John C

The numbers don’t lie, our season on season results (on the pitch not financial) are in decline.

When i hear people dispute this i really doubt the intelligence of those fans.

Why not

No the numbers actually say something else. Definitively not a slow decline as you put it. If anything we took a sharp hit from the beggining of the emirates project into a paradigm with a very slow positive progression. The finances are better now, the players we bought in are higher quality (arguably), the infrastructure is better, we have in the last 3 years won 2 cups, with a potential third this year, always in top four with finishing position slightly higher in the last 2 years. Only the total points support your theory. And you only need to look… Read more »

John C

No, the numbers do support a slow decline on the pitch, points not position in the table are the barometer and we’re getting further away. The size of our champions league last 16 knock out is also increasing, in the last 5 years our results are as follows: 2013 Bayern 3-3 on aggregate 2014 Bayern 3-1 2015 Monaco 3-3 on aggregate 2016 Barcelona 5-1 2017 Bayern 10-2 We’ve gone from narrow defeats to wallopings, that’s a very clear decline. As for the financial part of the equation, a lot of the increase has very little or nothing to do with… Read more »


Not quite why your comment is being thumbed down. It is very apparent that the management and team performances are in decline, anyone disputing this fact are just wrong. Also to comment about Arsenal winning 2 trophies in 3 years, should actually read 2 trophies in 12 years. Makes for sorry read g really.

Why not

No, not every body that doesnt agree with you is wrong. That is a very simple view of any problem.

Yankee Gooner

If points are truly the “barometer,” then what difference do the margins of victory or defeat make?

Why not

Well if you only choose the stats that support your theory rather than the entire picture. Than you will only ever see what you want to see.

To some people. Including the people governing the competition. These results mean an exit at the last 16. Which actually means its the same result achieved in different ways. In other words, a constant, a paradigm. A stable factor in the last few years.

So then you would use other indicators to measure growth or decline.

But fine, shout from the rooftops if you want.


I’m afraid this does not fit the agenda…


i think perry groves got it spot on. wenger is likely to stay and he just waiting for somekind of announcement in conjunction along with his extension of contract . it is most likely to be appointment of director , transfer budget for next window or coaching shakeup as he say.


Yes, congratulations for being very clever and everything. Now can you please show more respect for the Arsenal manager. All this anger of the Wenger Out lot is getting old.

John C

No anger, but it won’t stop until he’s gone


Really? So you encourage people to act like dicks till they get what they want?

John C


Why not


Why not


No anger, but anger


No where near as old as the Wengers success’s. There hasn’t been any progress at the football for at least a decade now. Why does he deserve such respect? He is being very well paid and not being successful. Even when the purse strings were “tight” (still enough to pay shit players £50k a week though) he was still pretty much the best paid manager in the league so I don’t buy this idea that he has been doing us a favour by sticking around. He knows if he went to somewhere like Madrid he wouldn’t last a season because… Read more »

Crash Fistfight

Fair enough. The man is a genius and was a revolutionary in England for a good few years. He’s also a gentleman and a thoroughly thoughtful and decent person. However, it’s not working for him at Arsenal any more. I even think if he went to somewhere like PSG he could do great things, as he’d be augmenting and adapting a different system/philosophy and bringing different ideas (heck, I’d love to see him do it, as long as it’s not at Arsenal’s expense). It has got stale and people are starting to resent him being at the club, when they… Read more »


Crash fistfight..agree 100% It’s just not about this season or the current run of form. The same pattern has been thier for 6 or 7 years now. The man deserves respect and most right minded arsenal fans will afford him that but because some want him to leave does not make the brainless. It’s an opinion held by many now.


Football fans calling for the gaffer’s head after a poor run of form? Unheard of.

I half agreed with you there but then realised Arsenal Fan TV is a thing


This whole thing is getting sickening.


This is all so depressing. If Wenger stays nothing will change.


I also have a number of reasons to think this is true:

Number One is Perry Groves, Number Two is Perry Groves, Number Three is…

Patrik Ljungberg

What about Liam Brady?


I’d love to see Patrick Vieira back at the club. Hope Groves is on to something.


Why don’t we bring back Peter Storey as Financial Director too…,.
There is absolutely no evidence of Vieiras value as a coach. When there is, and it points to him being good at it, then it will be a good idea. Not before.

Corona X

Check this out, an (in my opinion) very interesting read on what he’s doing across the pond:


Wenger is staying. Even if we come 5th, he’s more likely to “try and fix things” than ever. He’s staying. I think the board might let him stay under the condition we get a Technical director. As for Viera coming back, I’ve always said Arteta and Bergkamp would make better coaches than him. If I were to choose the ex gunners to join the coaching staff, I’d choose Keown, Bergkamp and maybe Lehman.

John C

The whole technical director bit i don’t get, Wenger’s great managerial talent is finding players, his weaknesses are motivation, tactics, and organisation.


^But can he actually sign players he’s identified. In the glory days he always had David Dein to actually get the player. Now all we have is Dick Law & Disorder who spent a whole summer chasing Wellington Silva!

In other news, has anyone seen Ivan?

a different George

I genuinely don’t understand this comment. Who have Arsenal signed since Dein left? Seriously?


Alexis, Ozil, Santi, Czech..?


Wenger’s real strength early on was identifying and signing the golden French generation before others recognized that’s what they were. It’s at least a bit of a head scratcher why he hasn’t signed any of the up coming talented French players despite attempting to We don’t seem to sign a lot of players where there genuinely is interest from other big clubs anymore – Barcelona didn’t want Sanchez – Ozil was forced out at Real, Santi was part of a fire sale at Malaga and Czech just wanted to live in London and we were convenient. Anyways we don’t… Read more »

Crash Fistfight

I’d hope there would be more to a technical director than finding players and negotiating their transfers. Could be wrong, though.

John C

I think they implement the technical direction of the club, whatever that may entail, what they definitely don’t do is coach.

They won’t make us defend any better, be more organised, learn how to press as a team, track runners, tailor tactics to the opposition etc etc, this stuff happens on the training pitch, irrespective of who any how many players you sign.

And the same goes for coaches, it makes no use if all the work is put in on the training ground if only for the manager to tell you to play open expansive football


But a Director of Football also needs to sort out contracts and to be aware of the market – Wenger has none of those attributes.

Faisal Narrage

I disagree, I think he can motivate players. Just hard to motivate them with no instructions. I do think his talent spotting hasn’t declined as much as the rest of Europe has raised their game to the point it’s not his USP anymore. Actually, you could easily say Atletico and Dortmund have left us behind in that regards, and arguably….*shudders* have been coming up in that regards. Agreed that those who think a Sporting Director will solve all our ails are in denial. Unless the Sporting Director is coming to implement new tactical coaching, and if that’s the case I… Read more »


Motivating? The current squad looks pretty much dead.
I’m pretty sure the fault’s is on the guy who build that team and manage it for some time now.

donald\'s trump

Which players in recent times?

Lucas? Xhaka? Sanogo? Gabriel?


I don’t know why you’re getting so many downvotes because you’re exactly right.

Kwame Ampadu Down

Why would you say that Trez ? I have no idea whether Paddy would be a great coach or not but have no idea on Arteta or Bergkamp either…..but as a player Paddy was so far ahead of someone like Arteta in terms or quality, leadership, a winning mentality, everything really.
Just seems a bizarre thing to say.


Sorry I meant a sporting director who Wenger would give the list of players he wants and not worry about price tags and whatever.
Wenger isn’t that useless when he has the players he wants. I have a feeling he’s not been getting his first choice options in the transfer window for a while now.


I’m not saying he can’t find potential in players – He just shouldn’t be the guy in charge of negotiating, As we’ve seen before (since Dein left), Arsene doesn’t posses that kind of skill, also adding the fact that he won’t ‘adjust’ to the way the market has changed has been a hugh problem for us.


What he really needs is his version of Carlos Queiroz

He has ALWAYS identified and bought excellent players.

Ozil and Alexis, Santi…you’re telling me David Dein did those deals??

Where he has faltered is his philosophy of non interference some questionable tactics…maybe slight pennywise pund foolish not buying one extra quality player in recent seasons

But as far as player development and purchase…he is one of the worlds best.

Some people here have an altered sense of reality it seems.?

Daniel stanton

Imagine Alexis throwing his toys out the pram, whats he going to do when Paddy whacks him in the face with a 14 inch pork sword!


Was Kim Kallstrom 6’4?


Don’t want to be a party pooper, but Vieira is essentially employed by Manchester City right now…


Steve Bould has been on coaching staff for years, all he does it put the cones out. Bringing back Vieria will be a grand gesture to appease the fans. Bring in a coach who has won leagues, CL, etc – now that would be a good move.


I would lose my head if Pat Sharp came back as a coach!

donald\'s trump

Well if he brings the funhouse twins with him then he’s welcome any day


As mentioned, I believe he is staying but if he said that now in the midst of 4/5 games lost, there will be uproar. If we beat City and West Ham, the announcement will not have as much reaction. Whatever happens, let’s just get behind the team….even though it is painful!

David Hillier\'s luggage

No offence to Perry, he’s a lovely guy and knows far more about football than pretty much all of us here, but how well connect to the club is he? This is all very much conjecture on his part. Nothing wrong with that, but given that Perry wasn’t part of the club during the the Wenger era it’s not like he has some insider info, its very much an outsider perspective (if perhaps more knowledgable than you or I). As for the Vieira link, highly unlikely. What people are forgetting is he is still pretty much Man City’s property. Would… Read more »


Very smart by the owner indeed if this is to be true. It’s clear having Wenger as a bullet proof vest is no longer as strong as it used to be. So adding in a high profile coaching addition (whose sole purpose would be to keep the manager honest and to help him replace said manger (and he hasn’t been too fond of him lately)) is another layer added away from Silent Stan. Very clever indeed and just another lightning rod. It also begs the question whether Wenger wanted to leave and was ‘convinced’ to help the club in one… Read more »


…Please. That Viera story is shite.

They’re just waiting for the right opportunity to tell us the bad news.


I doubt it is but maybe Sanchez and Ozil are going to pen to paper by the end of the season if we win th FA Cup or get into the top four for the champions league . Then they will announce it all at once.

I hope we can win the FA Cup but I doubt it very much.


OK Blogs, did Perry Really say that last bit?


Silly me, podcast had the answer to my question of course.


managers positions are always results based lets see how the next 3 games pan out then see if hes still staying stum

The Big Ticket

I will say that in terms of former players being touted as possible replacements for Wenger, Vieira would make more sense than Henry. But that being said, is Vieira the type of guy we would want to replace Arsene? He’s a fledgling manager in MLS, hardly comparable to the Premier League, and he’s still learning his trade. I’d much rather have a more established coach come in now for the short term, with an eye to Vieira and/or Henry returning to the club down the line. As far as the possibility of appointing a Director of Football, I just can’t… Read more »


Plot twist: Viera is coming back as a player. Finally we have a player like Viera again in the team.


All this obsession with ex players who hAve little experience operating in transfer market.


As a coach, that would mean moving on Bould

As a Director of Footy, rather bring in Giles Grimandi. We also have the scout for Leicester Wigglesworth which we hired last summer to takeover say as head scout should Grimandi get the boot upstairs.

At very least he has a track record with us.

Perry Groves…honestly…listening to ex players is as bad as listening to Ian Wright…


Arsène is human. I think he suffers from the same miscalculations and flawed thought processes as the rest of mankind stepping into their late 60s. The vitriol he is facing is impossible to comprehend. What will these people do if we lose out on even Europa league for the next 10-12 years? I’m anticipating staged suicide attempts streamed live on social media and sponsored by Ladbrokes. Running bet being the number of broken bones in each body. My money will be on zero because the most prominent of this lot are gutless, whining, wannabe impersonators. They don’t have the courage… Read more »

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