When is the best time for Arsenal to change manager?

When would it be best to replace Wenger? by AndersS

No matter, whether one want Wenger out asap or want him to stay, I think we can all agree, that sooner or later, we will have to get a new manager.

In theory, Wenger could be here many years from now, but I will consider it highly improbable that he will still be managing into his mid-seventies. So even if Wenger stays past this season, we would be looking at maybe maximum another 3-4 years, during which we would have to replace him.

Yes, I know, for those of us wanting him out asap, 3-4 years seem like an eternity. But that is not my point.

My point is, that even if you are a sworn “Wenger forever fan”, you would actually have to face the reality of a new manager, at least within the next few years. And once this is accepted a real fan would also consider, when might be the best time to change.

If you put the club’s interest first, and not when it might be best for Wenger personally, I doubt there could be a better time than after this season.

It is obvious, we are miles from being able to compete for the major trophies; PL and Champions League. It probably would take a major rebuilding, at least of the defense (incl. goalkeeper) to make us competitive.

How long will that take? I don’t know, but I doubt it is realistic, we can compete with the best next season. We are more looking at hoping for an improvement, that could put us back into top 4, which would be a huge step forward from where we are right now. No matter, whether we will go on to win the Europa League this year. The season has proved how far we from competing in a “proper” league competition.

Is it the best timing to give Wenger the job to make that step? Personally, I think there is no chance he can do it. But even, if you have the opinion, he can do it, would it be clever to let him try?

The official status is, that he has a contract, that includes next season. If he both manages to keep his job for next season and to get us back to top 4 (I count making us champions as completely out of the equation), we would then in a years´ time, have to ask, what now? Should Wenger then be given even more years? Why, because he can take us even further than back into top 4 of the PL in the next 2-3 years after next season and maybe make us champions when he is 73-74?I am sure very few, if any, consider that scenario realistic.

So, if we can agree, that Wenger will not take us all the way back to the top, we can concentrate on, when it would be best to get a new manager. I say in a few weeks.

The rebuilding that is so obviously needed should be left to a man, who might be able to take us back to the top. It is not a good idea to let a man, who will have to leave within the very next few years, start rebuilding. Even those, who think he could do it, should understand it.

On top of that, we have a situation where the majority of fans are so discontent, it is a joke. Can Wenger change that, if he stays? I don’t think so. The discontent is so widespread and so deepfelt, that it affects attendance and support in a major way, and in effect making the job even more difficult for Wenger and the players. However, this part of the equation could actually be solved in an instant with a new manager. It would create a huge lift in spirits for most fans, if Wenger stops now.

So my question is – why wait? Could there be better time within the next few years to get a new manager than now?



  1. John0711 says:

    About 3 years ago

    1. Arsene Out says:

      More like 5-6 but yes 3 would have been ok too.

  2. jon fox says:

    Good and sensible article but on a purely technical point I argue that there ACTUALLY IS A BETTER TIME TO SACK WENGER than at the end of this season! Altogether now, all speak at once ” TODAY” !

    1. Wolfy says:

      Should have gone when he thought that Manuel Almunia was a PL standard goalkeeper

      1. Splendid says:

        Should have gone the very moment he signed Squillaci and Sylvestre.

    2. Arnold says:

      When this current season campaign is over i thing we have less than five games left
      will be a gentleman thing to appreciate all he has done for the club and shake his hand and wish him good luck somewhere – we cant leave on past glory “like i build the stadium” which is not true contractor/archicture and Arsenal board and loan from banks did it not him

    3. John says:

      Yep……now…….let the transition begin………

    4. frank says:

      after 8-2 goals by man u

  3. HECTOR says:

    wenger supporters should be realistic and ask themselves weather wenger can win the league next in the next two seasons

    they just can’t understand that fans who want wenger out actually love the club and want us to do better than what we are currently doing.

    if everything is going to plan and we are where we want to be as a club I don’t think any fan would be complaining and wanting the manager out

    it seems wenger supporters prefer the arsenal fanbase to be unhappy and we don’t improve as a club than see wenger leaving to bring the fan base to with fresh hope.

    whether he wins the Europa league or not he should leave

  4. Sue says:

    I thought last season may have just been a blip (no champs league & finishing below the spuds) but this season the gap will be even bigger! If I’m honest, I really can’t see us winning Europa, so another champs league free season!
    We are already a laughing stock to everyone else, so I hope to God that silent Stan & the board do the right thing, sooner rather than later, because I don’t want another season like this… Yes it will probably take a few seasons to rebuild the team, but I’d rather have that, than next season finishing 10th or 11th if we carry on like this!

    1. Andrew E says:

      Good sensible response, fully agree on all points.

  5. Arnold says:

    And bad thing i dislike about Wenger was lying to Arsenal fans during transfer wait till last minute and not bring in anybody and come out with dishonest answers we did not find anybody in this transfer window or get somebody like Kim Kastrom who was never going to help improve a squad because he had a bad back or keep bring in a bunch of players whom work permit was going to be a biggest problem to get – i will not forgive him for those stuffs he used to do

    1. Ingleby says:

      Totally agree.

  6. jon fox says:

    We should organise a mass celebration outside the ground for the day he is finally sacked. We have probably around a month or five weeks to organise it. Imagine a crowd bigger outside the ground than the ones we are now getting inside, all going mad with delirium. That would send a real message to the regime that we will never accept another Wenger type as our next manager. Or ever after, either! I can’t wait to see- or rather not see – the ACTUAL attendance for West Ham game.

    1. Dennis Moriarty says:

      @John Fox, give it a rest. You know full well Wenger is going nowhere.

      1. jon fox says:

        First get my name right if you want to be taken seriously. Inattention to detail is exactly what WENGER HAS ALSO BEEN DOING ALL THESE YEARS. I f you are so confident in what you say then I challenge you to a bet of £500. I say he will be sacked this summer. NOW LETS SEE HOW BRAVE YOU ARE DENNIS. Just accept on here and I will gladly take your money. If you have any.

        1. LagosGunner says:

          Hi Jon,

          I’m open to the bet, even tho i want Wenger out at the end of this season, something tells me the board would want him to see out the last year.

          That same thing tells me I can ‘Chop your money’

          So I’m game to a 500 Pounds bet, and i’m 100% serious about this.

        2. Dennis Moriarty says:

          Jon Fox, my profound apologies for getting your name wrong. As for your offer of a bet, well I’m not a gambling man. You sir are a disgrace, you continually hark on that Wenger will be sacked, many of us want a change of manager and many of us are realist and understand the board will not sack him. To continue to abuse the man you are showing a lack of class, something that should never be said of any Arsenal fan. As for the use of upper case letters to enforce your view…. I repeat give it a rest and show some respect. As for having any money old chap, I find talking about such things with strangers in rather bad taste, not the done thing at all.

          1. Kenny Rolfe says:

            Jon, Dennis is right, stop all this stupid betting and challenging peoples pockets, I understand your frustration but you’re bigger than that. You’re posts are valuable to these pages. Dennis has been a firm Wenger Out man for some time, the only way he differs to you is that he wants it done respectfully. Surely not worth betting over.

          2. frank says:

            which manager is being respected here cos am confussed,the one who does not respect your views?come ooooon guys

    2. Darthballs says:

      That’s how you thank the best manager in our history

      1. Phil says:

        Yeah and look how he is treating US FANS at the end of his career.He just doesn’t care.This is an intelligent man.He knows he no longer has the ability to Manage a top level Football Club.His tired and outdated methods have left us trailing the very clubs we used to dominate.Wenger has left us 5 years behind these Clubs.The younger modern manager know how to get results.Even against each other.Wenger can’t even get a result away from home against teams in the relegation area.These teams used to FEAR playing us.Now they look forward to it.They know we will be playing with the same old tactics with plenty of the ball that gets us nowhere.No spine to the side.No passion in the side.No confidence from the players in the Manager.He should have been replaced 7 years ago

        1. Ozziegunner says:

          Dartfballs, Wenger is diminishing his legacy every match Arsenal plays.
          I think you need to look back at Arsenal’s history and compare Wenger’s titles in the top division, trophies won and success in Europe for the years managed compared to other managers. No other Arsenal manager has been allowed to stay in the position for 9 trophyless years.

          1. frank says:

            mourinho left epl after wining trophy went 4 a tour.on return,he found wenger stl saying will challenge nxt seasons. n stll won epl hehehe wengerrrrrr

      2. RSH says:

        he got very generously compensated. And he’ll still get his statue outside the stadium. what more do you want? Kiss the ground he walks on?

    3. Gunner22 says:

      Sorry jon, the only people would be you and bunch of haters on this site celebrating. Yes someday he will leave us, thats after next season, then celebrate as much as you want

  7. qone says:

    the sooner the better if he is sacked. against a. madrid on two legs we have no chance, even though every game has its own story. no plans and no ideas. we are at one time in the opponents eight yard box and suddenly we play the ball back to our keeper. the way the team is playing no progress is achieved so let us build for next season. its hard to build because the team needs about seven new players. – gooner = forever

  8. Nayr says:

    Wenger will never leave willingly even if he finishes 10th.

    The only hope i have of wenger leaving is Josh kroenke,ivan gazidis and lord harris.
    and the mighty gooners who have decided to boycott games.

    stan kroenke and sir chips keswick will always side with wenger.

    1. RSH says:

      empty stadiums might push it over the line.Stan hates that the cows aren’t coming to be milked .

      1. Arsene Out says:

        All the seats are paid for. People are just not turning up to the seats they bought. Which is the worst kind of apathy.

        1. Kenny Rolfe says:

          Nayr, RSH and Arsene Out, you’re all absolutely correct. They say the waiting list is around 40,000, I might be wrong, if that diminishes next season, lets say, down to 20,000 then the board will know they’re in serious trouble and they can’t afford to let that happen. Therefore I think a decision will have to be made before the season ticket is due because many of the holders, being part of the 90% of fans that want Wenger out, will want to know whether Wenger will remain next season. With no Champions league next year I think Wenger’s contract will be terminated unless he wins the Europa cup in which case I think they’ll let him see out his contract. I dread the thought. Personally, I’ve wanted him out ten years ago.

          1. Kenny Rolfe says:

            To follow up my previous message, I desperately want us to win the Europa Cup and return to the Champions league. With “Diamond Eye” in charge of transfers hopefully we’ll sign some quality defenders and more importantly a goalkeeper, I also think they might bring in a coach and keep Wenger just as a figurehead. I think I’ll just have to settle for that but whether Wenger will I’m not sure but whatever happens I’ll be on his case for the whole of next year and hopefully the last of his contract.

          2. Ingleby says:

            What concerns me is that too much is expected of Mislintat. He may well be the answer to the talent problem, but it remains to be seen how much trust is being vested in him. The coming transfer window should provide insight and, hopefully, targets are already being identified. I find all of this prolonged nit-picking over fees and last minute frantic ‘near misses’ very disappointing. Very half-baked and amateurish. Let’s see if anything changes.

  9. Goonerbri says:

    I’m not a snob or anything like a snob, but if I see the word loose instead of lose, or weather instead of whether, then I’m gonna explode with rage lol. Doesn’t it grate on others when people can’t spell.

    1. stubill says:

      Yep, but even worse is “text speak”, things like d instead of the, and dat, instead of that. Now that really grinds my gears.

      1. Toni ton says:

        Goonerbri and stubill, Please remember you have gunners from all over the world here. Most, English is not even their second language. Now you can imagine how intelligent these folks are coping with foreign language.

    2. jon fox says:

      Personally, as an educated man, I do not worry overmuch, provided that I can understand the point they are making. After all, this is an Arsenal site , not an English language exam. What gets my goat is wilful blindness by the obstinate but few WENGER DIEHARDS. Living in the distant past is surely for dinosaurs, like WENGER, not for supposedly intelligent fans.

      1. John Wick says:

        The majority of Wenger fans are the ones who have only seen Wenger as the manager of our great club they know nothing else that’s the reason they are petrified of change, I for one have been a fan before Wenger and will be after Wenger as you have Jon and our interests are for the good of the club not an out of date manager long long past his best! It’s seems if your not on Wenger’s side you’re not a real fan, we get told look at what he’s done for the club.. some of these people don’t seem to understand the definition of employment that man is an employee who’s been paid very very well anything he has done he’s done for money not for the love of the club let’s get that right.. if Wenger was so in love with arsenal football club like it’s claimed he’d have come out years ago and said I can’t do this anymore and if nothing else take a pay cut not a payrise. He’s a very blessed man to get paid so generously while failing the objectives placed upon him.

  10. ThirdManJW says:

    The biggest problem we have after Wenger is the mentality within the squad. Obviously the new manager will bring in some new players, but for his first season, and probably second season (should he last that long), the majority of the squad, and first XI, will be players that have worked under Wenger.

    There’s been ZERO accountability under Wenger, so his players are used to keeping their starting places, new contracts, and pay raises, even if they’ve consistently under performed. How will they react if the new manager isn’t so patient? What if the new manager notices that Ozil ALWAYS goes missing in big games, and starts dropping him? Will Ozil work on improving, or throw his toys out of his pram? How will the squad in general react, if the new manager sets a target of the league title, instead of targeting 4th place like Wenger does?

    It’s going to be very interesting to see what happens after Wenger’s departure. One thing is for sure, our next manager has a HUGE job on his hands. The majority of the squad may have to be removed, which won’t happen in just one season. Arsenal have massive potential, but our problems are so deeply ingrained, that it could potentially take years to fix.

    1. ThirdManJW says:

      Forgot to mention what I thought about, when is the best time to change manager. In hindsight, I would say 2010, and that would have still been respectful to Wenger. In terms of present day, sack him now!

      The reason I say sack him now, is because our season can still be salvaged. Crazy to think that we can technically still have a better season than Liverpool, Chelsea, ManU, and Spurs, should they get beaten in the FA Cup, and CL respectively. We can still win the EL, and qualify for the CL. Now that is highly unlikely to happen under Wenger, because of our record away from home, our record against quality opponents, and Wenger’s record in Europe. Sacking him now will improve us, because it now gives us an element of surprise. Everyone knows exactly what Wenger will do, but with a caretaker, who knows! New formation, new tactics, different players being used. It may not improve us by much, but it will definitely give us an advantage. Remember Di Matteo taking temporary charge of Chelsea and winning the CL?

    2. jon fox says:

      What you outline is certainly true but we have to start the cure from the deep pit Wenger has left us in. Not from where we ought to be had we played under a proper manager this last decade. It will take time, thanks to Wengers idiocy but the fans will accepot this provided they see definite progress. The reason Wenger is so loathed is that we can all see the steep regressioin which has to end with WENGERS SACKING . And it will !

    3. RSH says:

      We’re going to struggle initially no matter who manager is. As you said, a lot of poor mentality in this squad and players that aren’t up for it. They’ll have to go. It’s all part of the process, including the struggle. Just being a club that exists and gets worse with AW is even worse though.

  11. Tas says:

    When is he leaving his not his the Groundhog Manager, every day when I log into BBC sport and see BREAKING NEWS I get a bit exited but then when I click it’s another Chelsea manager sacked, they say in another 20 years time no mater where you are on the planet you will be standing five maters away from an ex Chelsea manager

  12. Chiza says:

    Jon fox I’m ready to challenge you on your bet.. I believe wenger will stay so let’s do it.. 500 pounds

  13. AB says:

    Sack him today

  14. Break-on-through says:

    The end of the season is best, he is such a huge part of Arsenal’s history which means it’s not gonna happen now and they’ll at the very least let him try and add some European glory to his credentials. I get that many think it’s best to just pull the ripcord now, it’s not gonna happen people not in this reality.

    The fans staying away from games, this might impact things but are they season ticket holders or how many of them are non paid for absentees. To hurt them the most would be to deliver a financial blow. The stadium half empty does not look good for sponsors and television/broadcasting etc, but the deals are already signed so it still gives Arsenal time to bring the crowd back. The seats allocated for day trippers, if they were to go unsold then maybe there is a chance of him vacating early.

  15. Atid says:

    In hindsight 2007 would have been ideal but certainly after a hat trick of fA cup wins. Wenger is now trying to claim the club is in a fantastic position, because the academy is in for 3 trophies and the first team still have a chance of European trophy and CL qualification, whilst being in a position of financial comfort.

    Let him have the last few weeks of the season, but then sit him down and show him his sell by date, even if we somehow scrape CL qualification. Offer him a year or more upstairs if we have to, but for heaven’s sake, Stevie Wonder can see wengers time has expired as the first team manager and head of coaching. Bould banfield primorac, Akers and Peyton need to go with him. Along with the failed performers on the pitch like xhakha cech mustafi bellerin Wilshire Jenkinson Campbell perez welbeck and a few others. OK not all are bad players but the others are too injury prone to keep carrying. Let’s not make the mistakes again that we made with Diaby, arteta rosicky and cazorla. To be a professional footballer, first and foremost you have to be fit, secondly u need to still be a top player none of the above fit that bill. Some are no better than Sanogo and squillaci. Rant over that is all, lol

  16. Rkw says:

    The best time was 8 years ago …. Now it’s a matter of getting someone on board and then announcing wenger will leave … I am guessing that a loss to athletico will trigger a serious search followed a couple of weeks later by an announcement … I would be happy if he went tomorrow he doesn’t deserve to survive this season but will be ecstatic at the news of his departure

  17. RSH says:

    do it now. It doesn’t really matter just get him out by the time this season ends. Nothing to offer, outdated. Seeya, thanks for the memories but you’ve overstayed buddy

  18. AWOut says:

    If Kronke has his way than can see Wenger moving up to join the Board in the summer….Steve Bould taking over with 5 year contract and Arsenal challenging for Championship league title in 3 years time.

  19. Kedar Damle says:

    Wenger should be asked to leave… There is not point in keeping him… At least right now we have option of appointing Tuchel or Ancelloti as our Manager because neither of them yet join anywhere…. But passage of time they will join somewhere therefore it will very very difficult for us to find appropriate ambitious manager for us…. We should accept the fact that we are not top club in Europe now so it it will be next to impossible to pursue top Manager and convince him to get it signed for Arsenal..

  20. Innit says:

    Anytime within the past decade
    If Wenger had signed Lacazette and a top DM in the summer of 2015 we would have won the PL over Leicester. We were begging him to do it. Pundits, former players, managers and journalists were recommending it too. But Wenger stuck with Giroud who went on a 15 game non-scoring run and played Walcott up front.

    Wenger is too clueless and stubborn minded to manage a top team (now a former top team thanks to Wenger)

  21. Ozziegunner says:

    I lost confidence in Arsene Wenger about the same time as jon fox. The real killers were when Arsenal sold Van Persie to Man U and later bought only Cech and no outfield players.
    I want jon fox to win his bet.
    How many well credentialed managers have Arsenal missed out on in the past and now into the future, if Arsene Wenger sees out his contract. By the way we don’t know what the clauses in his contract say, so he may be shown the door.
    As far as a new manager goes, hopefully he can build on the supposedly world class players we have and turn the remaining Wenger indulged, pampered, overpaid pussies into feral wildcats hungry for success.

  22. Me2 says:

    I thought you would have learned that Arsenal and its Board are not interested in success on the field.
    Share prices are at an all time high.
    They won’t risk that by showing some ambition.
    I see we are linked with Anthony Martial, and Marcus Rashford.
    That is exactly what our laughing stock of a defence needs is another striker.
    Genius Wenger.
    Total genius….

    1. Ozziegunner says:

      Me2, I am fully aware that Arsenal and its board are not interested in success on the field. However Arsenal will now (unless they win the Europa League) miss out for 2 seasons running on the £30 million plus generated by participation in the Champions League.
      Kroeke is now spending money on the LA Rams playing roster because he’ll have a new stadium to fill in the highly competive LA market. He realizes as a business man that commercial success is closely related to on field success. The AFL and the AFC, unlike the EPL, don’t have relegation and promotion. We all know how much relegation to the Championship costs a club and how tough it is to win your way back.
      Looking at Arsenal’s drop in league table position over the last 2 seasons and the resultant trend does not make pleasant reading for owners and sponsors.

  23. Mikejohn says:

    Is better we sack him now and play without a manager till the end of the season

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