Although Arsenal are still way behind the two favourites Man City and Chelsea to win the race to make Pep Guardiola the new manager for next season, with City clear odds on favourites, Chelsea at 6 to 1 and the Gunners back on 11 to 1, there has been a growing number of Arsenal transfer rumours suggesting that the Bayern Munich manager might surprise us and come to north London.
Arsenal have already overtaken Man United with the bookies and the words of Arsene Wenger in the press conference reported by Arsenal.com may well shorten the odds further. The Frenchman may have refused to say outright whether Arsenal were in the running but he did very little to dissuade the speculation over the Spaniard.
In fact he pretty much encouraged it and suggested that his own priority was not staying in the job but laying the groundwork for the next man to take charge of the side. We already know that Wenger is an admirer of the former Barcelona boss and he went further by saying that Guardiola’s apparent propensity to only spend a few years at a club was not a problem.
Wenger said, “Anything is suitable. Every manager has his own way to run and model his career. There’s not only one way as long as they give their best to the club where they are. What I think is most important is that anybody who works for a football club gives full commitment. How long does it last? Nobody knows. I didn’t plan to stay here for 20 years.
“I’m very pleased that you care about our club and my succession but it’s not my job to talk about that and not your job to make this decision. I can only make sure of one thing, that the guy who comes after me finds the club in a very strong position with very good players in a very good, strong financial situation. I hope I can convince you that I can do that.”
One very good way to do that would be to win the Premier League this season and put Arsenal in the top seeded group for the Champions League next season. Another would be to have a very strong squad, which we have, and plenty of money in the bank for the next manager to add the players he wants, which we have.
So is Wenger laying the perfect groundwork for Pep to walk into Arsenal?