Arsenal boss Arsène Wenger faced the media on Friday morning, two days after the Gunners’ latest Champions League humiliation.
Speculation surrounding the manager’s position at the Emirates has been ratcheted up in the past 36 hours, and it looks more likely than ever at this point that Wenger’s time at the club is drawing to a close.
That said, if they do get a new manager next season there is no guarantee that the grass will be greener, as Wenger himself was keen to point out in his early morning press conference:
“Even if I go, they will not win every game.
“I am used to [the criticism].
“I am here for 20 years. In life, it is important to do what is right. I am in a public job and I must accept that. Everybody can have an opinion.”
That said, Wenger gave no assurances that he would be remaining at the club beyond this summer. the 67-year-old insisted that he would still be managing next season, but suggested that it may not be in North London. The option of a two-year deal to remain is still very much on the table but as yet the contract remains unsigned.
“No matter what happens I will manage next season. Is it here or somewhere else? That is for sure. I hate defeat, I hate to lose games. I want to do extremely well for this club.”
— Sky Football ⚽️ (@SkyFootball) February 17, 2017
Wenger has had many opportunities to leave Arsenal in the past, with the likes of Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid trying to tempt him away on more than one occasion, so if he does leave the club after over two decades then he won’t be short of offers.
In the meantime, Arsenal’s next match will be an FA Cup fifth round tie away at non-league Sutton United. With his side effectively out of the Champions League and with a huge points deficit to claw back against Chelsea, the cup is now Arsenal’s best chance of earning some silverware this season.
If, however, they do end up losing that match, given the context and the difference in quality between the two sides then it would be extremely hard to see how he could continue in the job next season.