Sunday, July 14, 2024

Arteta: I want Wenger much closer to me

Mikel Arteta has reiterated his desire to see Arsene Wenger brought back into the Arsenal fold and confirmed he’s chatted with the Frenchman about the offer.

The 72-year-old hasn’t set foot in the Emirates since leaving the club in May 2018 and has been quite open about his disappointment at the way his 22-year tenure ended under pressure from the board.

Interviewed at the premiere of the recently released “Arsene Wenger: Invincible” documentary, Arteta said a reunion would be “beneficial for all parties”.

The Spaniard stands by those words but recognises, it can only happen when his former boss feels comfortable.

“There’s been communication, I spoke to him when we went to see the film,” said Arteta on Friday. “It was incredibly pleasant to see him, to chat to him and hopefully we can bring him close.

“I think he will have a great time just seeing the environment that he can create around him when he’s around this place because of the respect, admiration and the love that everybody has for what he’s done and, as well, for what he represents as a person in this club.

On what type of role Wenger might take up, Arteta continued: “I cannot tell you now but what I can say is that I’d like him to be much closer personally to me, because he’d be a great help and a great help for the club.

“Things take time, he has to dictate those timings. What I can say is that from my side and I can say on behalf of everybody [here] that we’d be delighted to have him much closer here.”

We’re only speculating but there’s something about the openness with which Arteta talks on this subject that suggests progress is being made behind the scenes. That said, given his role as Fifa’s head of football development, you wonder whether a return in some capacity is likely to take place this side of the World Cup in Qatar. We’ll see.

As a starting point, it would just be nice to see him in the stands at the Emirates.

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One Arsene Wenger.


There’s only one Arsene Wenger

David C

You got that right!

Would Wenger be like a new signing?

Vic Lin

I think I will cry if I see him in the stands at the Emirates. 😭


Can’t think of anyone better to give advice and support to Mikel.


It would be sublime wouldn’t it? I watched the Wenger documentary yesterday, and it really did reinforce how much I loved him, and Arsenal, when he was the boss. It did stir up quite a lot of untouched emotion I think I had basically parked and not really properly compartmentalized since his departure. And I didn’t think it would be possible, but it did make me loathe the Kroenkes even more than I did before. The recent interview that Josh Kroenke did for Sky Sports a few weeks ago hugely bothered me. If you ever wanted a reason to never… Read more »


Wengers time has come and gone. It’s because of the last 10 years of his tenure that we are still trying to clear up the mess left. Arteta should do his own thing and be judged by it.


Our 2 most valuable players at the moment, in Saka and ESR, wouldn‘t be here if he wouldn‘t have made our academy what it is today.


It’s an unpopular fact but it was Gazisis and Andries Jonker who modernised the Academy after getting rid of most of Arsene’s underperforming cronies.


What you mean there wasn’t an academy before Wenger turned up? Adams, Rocky, Thomas, Paul Davis, Kevin Campbell, Nial Quinn, Paul Merson, Ray Palour? Some Arsenal fans are utterly clueless and know nothing of our history pre-Wenger.

Heavenly Chapecoense

The very fact that people don’t know about our pre-Wenger history tells you about how important he was.


Don’t agree one bit mate. I think it would be great to have Arsene back in some capacity


There seems to be a lot of re-writing of history going on regarding Wenger’s swan song. The fans that wanted a change are being vilified for ‘hounding out’ Arsene. And the commentators who routinely mocked us for our ‘top 4 trophy’ aspirations now use Wenger’s consistency as marker of his success. But Acknowledging the man was flawed and stubbornly stayed when he should have walked, isn’t the same as turning him into an abject failure. Unlike at man united where the spectre of Ferguson looms large over the club still, Wenger has been away long enough that wounds have healed… Read more »


I agree with a lot of this, but the only way we all move forward and welcome him back is if we acknowledge our massive role in forcing him out. People were not wrong to want change, but the way fans expressed themselves with the “Wenger Out” campaign was disrespectful of what the classiest man in football did with this club, and what he did for the Premier League. It’s overwhelmingly clear that that hurt him, and though time heals all, we could speed up the process with an organized movement to welcome him back. To be honest, I think… Read more »

Arsene for CEO

Crystal clear view and what a voice! Your parents did amazing @futsboller.


Imagine a guy asking for help and you are telling him he should do his own thing. Arteta more than anyone should know where he is at in his career and the type of help he needs to move up as a coach/manage and the club up to the next level. Obviously you don’t understand how complex operating a club is. But arteta does and truly now seeing the value of this man.


You obviously don’t know how much damage Wenger did to the club after David Dein left. It’s no coincidence as soon as Wenger decided to neglect the back four that our league position reflected a weak team, combine that with continually buying small technical players in midfield rather than balancing it with power which is needed in the PL more than any other league in the world. Wenger brought us Denilson, Chamakh, Gervinho, Sanogo, Xhaka, Kolasinac, Ozil (who cried everytime he got kicked) the list goes on. Perhaps you need to open your eyes and realise Wenger inherited the best… Read more »


It always amazes me how it’s reported that David Dein ‘left’, rather than the truth: he was the architect of his own downfall, he brought in both Kroenke and Usmanov – creating the boardroom cold war which was a disaster for the way the club was run – while selling his shares to the tune of £75m and making himself incredibly rich.

He did amazing work with Wenger, no doubt, but his departure was entirely his own fault.

A Different George

Because if it hadn’t been for Wenger, we would be challenging Man City and Chelsea for the title every year, and would have left Liverpool far behind. It’s obvious.

Finsbury Park Gooner

Ignorant and disrespectful


Wengers problem (and our problem still is) the owners. They do not have a clue on how to run successful sports teams because that is not the reason why they own them. They have said that themselves. They’ve been absolutely appalling custodians since their full take over, and even when they were that majority shareholders. The recruitment strategy for basically all of the key positions on the business side of the club has been none existent. The amount of internal promotions handed out to members of staff who’ve a subpar track record of results is hugely alarming. The narrative they’re… Read more »


Doubt anyone’s gonna be against this. I think arteta would benefit a lot from a bit of occasional steering from the big man upstairs – which to be fair to him he has said himself.

Mark Rowe

Love this, hope it happens.

Announce Bendtner

I think the timing is right. This is clearly Arteta’s squad, he’s had enough time to start shaping it. Arsene’s presence wouldn’t undermine Arteta and in my opinion would only help to inspire this young squad.


Matt Busby used to cast a long shadow at Man Utd in the years following his retirement, managers came and managers went with almost all of them citing how difficult it was with Busby still at the club, all that is except Alex Ferguson who welcomed having his fellow Scot around and valued his advice and Old Red Nose didn’t do too bad in that environment did he?

I think it’s positive that Arteta welcomes and actually is encouraging Wenger’s return and I hope it comes to pass.


The other relevant point is you do wonder how well old red nose’s presence has helped or hindered his successors, all of whom have been spectacular failures? I think what both the Busby and Ferguson examples show is that the majority of the time it is an issue for the current manager having those sort of people around exerting some degree of control – real or perceived. So it only really works if they are an absolutely perfect fit – in which case it might be a huge benefit. I can see the case as to why it may well… Read more »


Good point, it also depends on each particular manager and how confident they are in their own ability, working with an ex-manager at the club, to me it’s a positive that Arteta welcomes that.


Could this be arteta subtly speaking about a gap in the hierarchy of the club that he feels needs to be addressed? All bonhomie aside, maybe it’s not just that he’d welcome arsene back, but that there’s still a very real piece missing from the set up.


Arteta doesn’t need to play cloak and dagger with the press, if he feels there’s something missing he can speak directly to the club, he’s well respected by the owners and the board. He seems to really like and respect Arsene, why does it have to be more than just that?


I think this could work. Arsene’s looser improvised style might help Arteta to slightly relax some of his overly rigid tactics and move our young controlling manager to the next level.
Problem would be if form dipped, Arteta gets sacked and Wenger is still here overseeing the next manager. Would that relationship work?


Is it just me who, on reading how great it would be to see him in the stands, immediately imagined Arsene waving his scarf and yelling; “THE REFEREE’S A WANKER” at Mike Dean?

Arsene for CEO

Definitely just you but a hearty well done to you nonetheless.


The club’s next big job is to sign a world class striker that can help us compete at the very top of the table.

Wonder if there’s anyone out there who could help Arteta and Edu with this…

Arsene for CEO

Wouldn’t it be just a blast if we could get the guy who signed the best striker in the history of the club? If this happens and works out my money’s on us winning the the premier league and champions league in two years. Ramsdale!


Maybe Arsene could tell Mikel to stop barking at the players every second of the game.


You do recall that Klopp and Pep were very much that way during their first few years at Liverpool and City, respectively, as they needed to coach actively and aggressively until their players mastered the style (and no longer needed the constant instruction). They seem pretty successful now ….


until then what about showing some sort of apriciation on a match day exactly at 49mins. what do you think admin? I think we need to start a campaign.

Merlin’s Panini

There is clearly a wound that needs to be healed here. Arteta’s doing the right thing. If he can get Arsene to come back as an ambassador for the club there’s no doubt it would strengthen our hand in transfer negotiations etc. Wenger’s a smart guy and will be able to assess where things went wrong for him in hindsight. Cut out of the direct emotional impact of management I think he would be an excellent advisor to Arteta. It’s a win for us if Arsene wants to return in that capacity.


Loved AW but worry about him signing for the great rip off merchants at FIFA and his promotion of World Cup every other year. I hope it’s not the start of his downfall.

Teryima Adi

Les Professeur, thanks for all you did.🙏

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