Arsenal round-up: Wenger's decision; Gazidis on transfer window; Key players unhappy
Arsene Wenger decided to sign a new contract to stay on as Arsenal manager at the back-end of last season, but he has admitted that he did consider leaving. There remains a divide within the fan-base and the Frenchman has opened up on his feelings towards his future. He spoke to Telefoot and his comments were picked up by the Mirror:
“Yes I hesitated about signing a new contract for personal reasons. I have been at Arsenal for 20 years and I ask myself all the time if I should continue to run the club. And also because we struggled a lot last season. Coaching a different club would be possible. There have been contacts with PSG.”
His response suggests that his passion for coaching lives on and he didn’t want to test himself at a new club. It would have been tempting to move back home and coach PSG, who are one of the biggest teams in Europe, but his loyalty to Arsenal prevented him from doing so. Although the early signs are that he could regret his decision, his love for the club can’t be questioned.
After signing only two players during the summer and seeing one key first team player depart, the majority of the Arsenal support are underwhelmed by the summer transfer window. However, chief executive Ivan Gazidis has claimed that it should be viewed as a success. The Star reported that he sent an email out to players and staff that included the following line:
“At the end of the window, reviewing all activity, we have once again improved the quality and depth of our squad.”
This is an incredible statement to make, especially as they signed only two players and saw nine depart. They may see the two players that they signed as a step-up in quality, but they haven’t improved across the board. In terms of squad depth, they are now weaker than they were last season. If Gazidis really believes that, the future looks bleak for Arsenal.
Their transfer window has been dissected online and a number of different journalists have had their say on it. David Ornstein from BBC Sport delivered a thorough analysis and stated that both Shkodran Mustafi and Hector Bellerin wanted to leave. There was interest in both, but this is the first indication that they are unhappy at the Emirates Stadium.
It is clear that the majority of the current players no longer want to be at the club. The atmosphere under Arsene Wenger is one of apathy and that is reflected in their performances on the pitch. Although the Frenchman is a legend of the game, the new contract given to him is likely to set the club back years.
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