Wenger pays homage to visionary Dein & admits job offers

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Arsene Wenger used his penultimate pre-game press conference as Arsenal manager to thank former CEO David Dein for taking a chance on him back in 1996.

Dein, who left the club in 2007 following a boardroom dispute and went on to sell his 14.5% shareholding in the Gunners to Alisher Usmanov, was a vocal and visible presence in the media and the dressing room during the Frenchman’s trophy-laden first decade at the club.

The duo first struck up a relationship in 1989 when Wenger, having watched a match at Highbury, got talking to Dein’s wife in the directors’ box. It proved to be a serendipitous moment that, via dinner and a game of charades, eventually led to an unknown coach from Strasbourg succeeding Bruce Rioch as Arsenal manager.

“I would like to finish one of my last press conferences to thank David Dein who brought me here,” said Wenger ahead of Wednesday’s game with Leicester.

“He had a special vision for the future for the Premier League and as well he gave me, a foreign manager, a chance when nobody knew me here. I would like to thank him.

“He was always a consistent support through my 22 years. He deserves from me a special thank you because he’s a special man.”

Since news of Wenger’s Arsenal departure broke, Dein has been championing his close friend’s qualities to suitors across the globe. Today, the 68-year-old admitted for the first time that he’s had several job offers.

“Yes, more than I expected,” he quipped when asked about whether contact had been made by interested parties.

“At the moment I focus on doing my job well. I didn’t analyse anything or consider anything.

I want to work well until the last day of my contract, and then after, I will rest a little bit and go from there.

“What is for sure is that I will be active. My brain demands work and is active. I have a huge experience of management and people management. Overall, I will work. What will I do? I don’t know yet.

“I don’t want to go any further on that or into any detail at the moment,” he responded when asked if clubs in England had been in touch.

Wenger was similarly coy on a suggestion, made by Pat Rice, that the game’s biggest regulatory bodies, UEFA and FIFA, could offer him a job.

“Honestly, I don’t know. I have to think about that. I like green grass and I like to walk on it every morning. I don’t know if I’ll continue that, it’s possible.”

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Arsene's Red Tie
Arsene's Red Tie

I just want Arsene to be happy

King Nacho
King Nacho

It’s amazing that someone doesn’t want him to be happy

DB10s Air Miles
DB10s Air Miles

I was just thinking the same thing…. he’s not the manager anymore, you got what you wanted and now you wish him misery, it’s kind of fucked up.

Aminu
Aminu

Obviously those who dont want him happy even after knowing the fact that come next season the man isnt going to be our coach. These same people are just as bad as Piers Morgan… fuck off.. u all can change teams supporting arsenal is not in your DNA.

A P
A P

The usual suspects

IamaGoober

It would be a great bit of fortune if Arsene were to end up at UEFA … hopefully that would mean we might get a few slightly more favorable ties, and referee’s that don’t send our strikers off during a game for kicking the ball away.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

I was also surprised but let’s do not engage into mccarthyism over here.

Easy tiger
Easy tiger

That was a very nice and thoughtful thing to say. I suppose it sums it all up. Someone puseh red, i suppose that was a mistake. It can happen.

Vehcede
Vehcede

It’s been consistently 3 down votes for 3 comments. Some people are just that bitter

Reality Cech
Reality Cech

If he has enough green grass I’m sure he’ll be!

Paul
Paul

I hope he takes his time and picks the right job.

santori
santori

I should think he will have no end to offers.

But the one I feel is suited to him (if it is offered) will be taking over (likely) from Deschamp post world cup for the National Team.

It will be a departure from club football.

Having been at one club for so long, it will be a bit unnatural to go straight to another club not to mention he may not relish the constrains at another place.

Meanwhile, to some extent there is more time and pace (less pressure) with the National job as the next big event is 2 years away (euros) giving him time to breath and build.

At 68yrs, this may be critical.

Plus currently, he will benefit greatly from a new golden generation of players and there will be few to match Wenger in terms of developing and getting the absolute best out of young bright potentials.

Futsboller
Futsboller

But with a national team, he wouldn’t get much time with the players to develop them. I think he would do just fine, but I think he’s more inclined to take a job that puts him on the training pitch 5-6 days a week throughout the year.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

I can even see Wenger as the CEO of a telephone company.

Priim
Priim

He’s going to manage the biggest club in North London and resign another contract…come on Wenger screw the haters…

santori
santori

Amazing even in these years of ‘comparative failure’ that he has won more FA cups (or indeed significant trophies) that the Great pretenders and the much lauded media darling Ponch.

Gunnertron
Gunnertron

SURPRISE!!!

santori
santori

David Dein was absolutely visionary in bringing an unknown like Wenger into the club.

I’m not sure I trust the current board of have the same level of erudite observance.

Mslintat and Sanheli of course have been brought in to replace what Wenger has done so remarkably over the year.

Wenger is next to none in identifying, spotting and developing talent.

He has made errors but critically, he tends not to over spend so it is of less consequence to our bottom line. This is crucial for a self sustaining club.

If anything it was one of the qualities that afforded us the capacity to build the stadium with bank loans.

The other was of course the success Wenger achieved so early on and (unheralded by the less educated) the consistency of his minimum finish in the top 4 and in champions league for so long.

This consistency is underrated by the usual facile press all too keen to lampoon our fourth place trophy and then herald it as some sort of new dawn when teams like Spurs have less than achieved the same level of feature back to back let alone win trophies (say the FA cup)

Taken as a whole, Wenger has won 7 FA cups, 3 titles in 22 seasons. Had he won the europa this season, it would have been one major trophy every next season, a remarkable consistency.

Sadly it doesn’t quite even out that way and the middle years were frustratingly barren. We should have at least won the title 2 more times 2015-16 and maybe 2007-08 seasons.

But Wenger has been prey to his own merits. His frugality got the better of him by a narrow margin.

His fascination for internal development and reliance on youth product became our undoing.

Yet to say he suffered without Dein at the helm is a bit mixed.

Yes he may have benefitted from a push by Dein to spend a bit more for certain.

But none-the-less even with the less fancied Dick Law, Wenger bought some incredible players. Santi Carzola, Koscileny, Monreal, Giroud, even with Kolasinac, none exactly broke the bank and all superb players in an otherwise constantly incomplete puzzle.

I think there is merit to say that there was a lack of stature (and possibly enough care) within the club post Dein to persuade Wenger or lay better early framework for a slightly stronger spend to squad balance and that in many ways showed symptoms in our loss of RVP (Nasri, Fabregas to some extent just before) curtailing the need for constant catch up in those years 2010 to 2014.

The worry now is that Mslintat/Sanheli will be too strong a pole without a manager coming in with sufficient gravitas to hold his own.

We have seen hint of that with the purchases in January with less consideration again to needs of squad balance of strategic demands for the season. Purchase of an admittedly good striker but one cup tied for a route back into the crucial CLeague (so beneficial to our summer spend) did not pass muster for me, nor the convenience of swapping Mhkyitaryan in lieu of needs to our width in the squad without over commitment of fullbacks.

Who we bring in now will determine whether Mslintat/Sanheli/Gazidis continues their own track to purpose or if there is sufficient strength in management to balance things.

For that reason I am less enamoured by suggestion of Luis Enrique, Tuschel or worse half baked Viera and Arteta.

But it may yet come to pass as it is as much an issue of control rather than what may necessarily be best for the club and management.

Despite what he says, hopefully Wenger will weigh in behind the scenes before departure. He has only the good of the club in mind now.

Easy tiger
Easy tiger

Oh come on. That is not a comment, that is a book. But i like it just the same.

Jarghs
Jarghs

Arsenal without Arsene is going to feel very strange for quite some time

Paul
Paul

It’s also going to be interesting. COYG.

Pedant
Pedant

Biggest thing that weakened Arsene was Dein not being there to do the dirty work behind the scenes. Needed him to stay or get someone like him.

DB10s Air Miles
DB10s Air Miles

Yeah, it seems like too big of a coincidence to overlook. Dein also had a very good relationship with the dressing room, I wonder if Ivan is so connected to the players?

Aminu
Aminu

Absolutely I remember after the issue with the board and Dean decided to leave Wenger was also willing to step down as well.. #give me my dean” was his cry… Dean persuaded him to stay despite knowing that the two of them were Bat man and Super man

Bring back David Hillier
Bring back David Hillier

The next manager must have A R S E in his first first name. Narrows the options somewhat.

Paul
Paul

Surname would also be fine surely? Let’s not rule everyone out! 🙂

ramgooner
ramgooner

Easy. Overmars.

Anthony
Anthony

Not quite A R S E

But Arsene to Arteta? Close enough?

Mayor McCheese
Mayor McCheese

I’ve been told I have an A R S E for a face. Does that count?

gooner
gooner

Arshavin?

Anonymarse
Anonymarse

Allegri already humiliated Sp*rs, that’ll do for me

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Let’s be creative to get a creative manager : allARdyCE

Richard
Richard

“I like green grass and I like to walk on it every morning”

Such a thought provoking man.

Fatgooner
Fatgooner

It all went wrong when Dein left. It left Wenger with too much power and turned Le Prof into a power-mad dictator. An Arsenal with Dein and Usmanov in charge would have done so much better.

arseblog
Admin

Yeah, but it was all Dein’s fault. And he sold out.

Martin
Martin

He was sacked so how was it his fault. Sorry Andrew I don’t understand your point.

arseblog
Admin

Because he basically attempted a coup by arranging for Kroenke to buy shares, he’d become chairman etc. That’s why the initial reaction to Kroenke from the board was so negative.

Dein got fired, sold to Usmanov to see if he could take control, got his £75m, and here we are with ownership cold war.

Martin
Martin

The implication that Dein sold out to Usmanov just to take the money is wrong. He genuinely felt that he made a mistake by backing Kroenke and saw Usmanov as the better man who would have Arsenal’s interest at heart. If Lady Bracewell Smith has sold her shares to Rad and White Holdings it could be a totally different picture.

piggoon
piggoon

I sense Sacarsm?

DB10s Air Miles
DB10s Air Miles

Well lady bracewell Smith also springs to mind….

TeeCee
TeeCee

Personally I reckon that Arsene isn’t very good at buying players. Very good at identifying targets, but too prone to dithering over an actual purchase.
Back when Dein was around, Arsene would mention that he was keen on so-and-so and Dein would make it happen.
Oddly this would appear to mean that Arsene would work better in conjunction with a dedicated DoF, despite how much he hates the concept.

DB10s Air Miles
DB10s Air Miles

I think you’ve pretty much hit the nail on the head. He seems to have identified plenty of players since dein’s departure but we seem to have really struggled to get the deals over the line.

   kaius
   kaius

It seems David Dein was the last football man he respected at the club (also explains why he went straight to Kroenke to get a new contract instead of waiting for the Board meeting last summer).

Wenger liked the DoF concept the way him and Dein worked it – he just didn’t want that relationship to become “formal” with some rando he wouldn’t respect having a say in his work.

kas
kas

The story (if it’s true) of how Dein & Wenger saw Sol in a restaurant and Dein mentioned signing him. Wenger ‘Oh no we cannot afford him etc’ Dein got it sorted. Just sums up what Dein gave to the relationship, Wenger just dithered and dithered for years after Dein was ousted. On another matter, we have not got an away point in 2018 come on 2 games to go.

db_10
db_10

Usually former “subjects” of a “dictator” won’t speak so highly of him…you may not have agreed with his footballing decisions which is OK but please don’t insult the man like that.

David
David

Usmanov is on the sanctioned list of Oligarchs. So no thanks. I get my kicks with good people. If Arsenal is taken over by blood money, I’ll stop supporting after 50 years. Some of the treatment Wenger received almost pushed me to leave, some gooners are despicable!

Fatgooner
Fatgooner

I suppose by “good people” you mean an owner who won’t put a penny of his own cash into the club and who only cared about making money?

David
David

That’s his choice as an owner, I’d rather he invested but understand the principles by which this club is managed for long-term success. Injecting capital for temporary short-term gain, into a commercial enterprise is fool’s paradise. Football is big business. I see you don’t criticise the players for being commercial, so why do you criticize Stan. Have you contributed beyond your ticket price? I don’t own part of Warner when I take my daughter to see Harry Potter. And she is a big fan, she knows how to be a fan, never a bad word aimed at Harry! And she enjoys it. Do you enjoy Arsenal?

John Bull
John Bull

For me , being a fan of Arsenal means you support the club because of its history and tradition , how the team plays , yes also the values projected by the club and through some form of personal connection – locality , childhood memories of watching them or reading about them if you are among the millions of fans overseas …. from the comments and votes from a minority of arseblog readers , it now seems to me that there are some fans who only support Arsenal on the conditions that it wins all the time and look for an easy scapegoat if the team gets some bad results …..I very much hope that these fans are in a small minority , however even that small minority has influenced to a large degree the reaction from the board …. I have no doubt that the disunity reflected in the attendance at the Emirates – at most 30% staying away at its worst – after Arsenal lost to City in the league cup final led to AW’s decision … AW will be alright and he deserves all the good things and success he will have after Arsenal …. However , Arsenal fans will have to anxiously live through the next 1-2 years to find out what sort of Arsenal we are going to see….The board will have to get things right these coming months without the benefit and cover provided by Wenger ….

Zyrth
Zyrth

Overseas fan for 20 years now. Football didn’t hit me until I was 12. First time I saw a live telecast of Arsenal I was won over. Didn’t understand much about football but loved the red and white kit. Didn’t look back ever since. Love all things arsenal, our history tradition.. where we come from. Took a personal pride that Arsenal was founded in 1886, and I was born in 1986.

The ups and downs didn’t mattered to me, because we were far from a dominant force in English football history. If the old timers had to suffer, why can’t we? Arsenal till I die!

Fatgooner
Fatgooner

“Injecting capital for temporary short-term gain, into a commercial enterprise is fool’s paradise.”

No it’s not, David. Just take look at Chelsea. The smart move for Kroenke when he took over would have been to soften the blow of the stadium debt repayments by injecting some of his own cash; that would have prevented the need for Wenger to sell players and would have made us more competitive. On-field success would have led to greater commercial revenues, so he could have got his money back.

Instead we went down the “fourth is a trophy” avenue. Kroenke was happy with mediocrity just as long as we got the CL money. Loyal Arsenal fans were happy to put up with this nonsense for years until they finally snapped and stopped turning up. That’s why Wenger is going.

The real problem at Arsenal was never Wenger; it was an incompetent, small-minded owner who couldn’t see the big picture. With proper financial investment and top-quality management Arsenal could be the biggest club in the world, both on the pitch and in the boardroom. But Stan just wanted to make a few pennies to keep his “sporting portfolio” running smoothly.

And Arsenal fans were the big losers.

Wengerballz
Wengerballz

Sorry buddy but you don’t get money and you don’t get football.

SB Still
SB Still

A role in UEFA or FIFA will be so apt for Wenger’s intelligence. Hence that rules him out with the guys who run those!

3pointsinthetoilet
3pointsinthetoilet

Exactely my thinking he could not work with those bribey cun*s…

Wengerballz
Wengerballz

I don’t think so. The ethics level over there wouldn’t suit him.

Herb Kazzaz
Herb Kazzaz

Yep. People in positions of relative power like that are, without fail, wankers. Seriously. Without fail. “those people who must want to rule people are, ipso facto, those least suited to do it”.

Wengerballz
Wengerballz

I really hope he doesn’t take a job in England. That would be very weird. Ideal would be a national team. France or England. Maybe Spain.

Clock-End Mike
Clock-End Mike

I can’t see him taking on another PL club. It would be too weird for him as a big Arsenal fan to have to compete with us. Ligue 1, perhaps — would he go back to Monaco? Or Lyon? I don’t think they’re looking for a manager, though. I’d love to see him challenge PSG.

Twatsloch
Twatsloch

Wherever he goes, and I hope he continues to manage teams, they’ll be blessed to have him.

arsepedant
arsepedant

We’d love him here in Vancouver. Come to Canada, Arsene!

adgonner
adgonner

I would love Wenger to win the premier league with some other club. Won’t we?

adgonner
adgonner

That ‘bye bye’ is the most humourous thing I am going to hear for some time.. I mean just the sound of it. don’t get all riled up brothers..

afan
afan

wenger off to everton then, with usmanov, could be interesting

Highbury
Highbury

The idea that Wenger and Dean, over a game of charades, got to talking about what they believed was that future of football, and that it led to one of the most incredible eras of modern football, is the type of thing thing that makes me love reading history.

It’s easy sometimes to look at history and think that the events that happened were inevitable, but oftentimes the outcome of significant events can come down to pure chance. I’m glad Arsène made such a positive impact on Mrs. Dein.

Naked Cygan
Naked Cygan

I don’t know about you lot, but I will be supporting any team Arsene manages, and wish him all the best. Arsenal is still my team, but this man is Arsenal, and I will want him to succeed anywhere he goes. We win together, we lose together…no matter where you go…we will never forget all the amazing memories.Thanks again Arsene!!

MrT
MrT

Arsene… England manager… would be nice !

TeeCee
TeeCee

Just out of interest, was there a plausible reason why Arsene happened to be at Highbury to watch a game and in the director’s box for that chance meeting with Mrs Dein?
I can’t believe such things happen by chance, especially when David Dein is involved.