With the news that Andries Jonker has left the club for Wolfsburg, it means that there is now a vacant position at Arsenal.
The Dutchman leaves North London after almost three years, during which time he has worked with some bright young stars currently in the youth ranks. Jonker was the boss of the Arsenal academy, but when his former employers Wolfsburg came in contact about the vacant position of manager at the Bundesliga side, it was an offer too difficult to turn down. Jonker takes Arsenal legend and former academy coach Freddie Ljungberg with him, who will be Jonker’s assistant in Germany.
As a result of the pair’s departure midway through the campaign, Arsenal are of course keen to hire a new boss or managerial duo to continue with the youth ranks for at least the remainder of the season. No names have been mentioned for the intermediary, but there are a few famous, well respected names that currently head the list.
Those reportedly in contention are Steve Marrow, Dennis Bergkamp and Pep Segura. Marrow was a player for the Gunners in the 90’s and is currently Arsenal’s head scout for the academy. Marrow’s familiarity with scouting young players with potential may be more useful off the pitch rather than off it, but I’m sure he would be able to also use his talents to identify the best of the bunch already on our books.
Dennis Bergkamp of course needs no introduction as to his legendary status and he is considered a firm favourite for the job. Bergkamp has worked with the youth at Ajax, before making his way up the managerial level at the Dutch side. He holds the managerial experience as well as the obvious knowledge of the club’s principles. Considering he has been recognised as a potential candidate post Wenger, perhaps a role in the Arsenal academy would fit the bill nicely to see if he could one day lead Arsenal out as manager.
Finally is Pep Segura, who is currently the youth boss of Barcelona. Segura is of course well recognised to be working with some of the very best talents around, having established that Barcelona’s La Maisia academy is one of the best in world football. By hiring Segura, he’d be able to influence the Barcelona style of play upon Arsenal players at a very young age, a style that Arsenal have already been linked with in the past. However the biggest issue is that i think it would take a relatively large offer for Segura to swap sunny Spain, where he is working at a fantastic academy, for Arsenal’s youth side whom most certainly need an injection of talent worthy of promotion.
Which of these names should be top of Arsenal’s wanted list?