If you take a quick look at the managers around in English Premier League, you will find that the Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is in a different league of his own. Wenger has managed more matches at Arsenal than the combined total of games of all his Premier League rivals at their current clubs.
It also makes you wonder how long it will be before he bids adieu. There will be all sorts of questions – will this be his last season, does he want to win another Premier League title before bidding goodbye or is he planning for next season too?
Not surprisingly, the 65-year-old is perennially asked about following the path of his old foe Sir Alex Ferguson. Wenger has admitted that the thought of retirement and the idea of walking into the sunset makes him panic. The coming season would be his 20th year in charge of the Gunners.
Most of his initial time was scattered with intriguing duels on-and-off the pitch with Sir Alex Ferguson. And when Fergie retired in 2013 after 27 years at the helm with Manchester United, there was only one question. When will Wenger follow him into a life away from the game?
Wenger said that retirement crosses his mind sometimes but it is for no longer than five seconds. And when Fergie’s choice is discussed, Wenger said that Fergie has time away from the pitch to spend with his horses and also travel around to matches whereas Le Prof has no life outside of Arsenal…
There actually is no dearth of enthusiasm for Wenger to carry on for another season; and may be for more seasons to come. Wenger is correct when he says that football is new every day. There are new clubs that are warming up to the challenge of fighting for trophies. When he started at Arsenal, Wenger had to fight only with United and Fergie.
And in the past five years of so, Wenger has seen the resurgence of Chelsea and Manchester City – albeit assisted with the money bags. He has also seen Liverpool fizzle out and trying its best to come back into contention this season. Wenger will love to add another Premier League trophy to his cabinet and has shown his hunger by adding Petr Cech to his perennial problematic position. Expect him to fine tune the squad further before the season starts.
And yes, do not expect him to walk away before another domestic League title.