Tony Adams has suggested that Arsene Wenger is the main reason why he has not been able to return to Arsenal in an official capacity.
The Gunners legend retired in 2002 having captained the side to their second Premier League and FA Cup double in five years, but believes that Wenger has blocked his return to the club as a coach, such as the way former teammate Steve Bould has done.
In his book “Sober: My Life, My Story” which has been serialised in the Sun this week, Adams confirmed that he tried to return to Arsenal as a coach on several occasions, only to be fobbed off repeatedly.
Furthermore, he believes that the reason for this was down to his public criticism of Wenger’s coaching ability (or lack thereof, to play devil’s advocate) – before revealing that what he said in public wasn’t actually as bad as what he originally intended to say about his former boss:
“Arsene is so dominant that he was probably not going to like it if I said, ‘We’re conceding bad goals, I’m going to take the back four today and organise them.
“Because Arsene is essentially not a coach — and that is the second reason why I believe he didn’t want me. Back in the day I said in an interview coaching wasn’t Arsene’s strong point.
“Actually in the original draft, I said he couldn’t coach his way out of a paper bag. And though I modified that in the final article, it didn’t go down well.
“It all left me feeling that I would never get a chance in any capacity while Arsene was there.”
Since retiring fifteen years ago, Adams has ventured into management – but the results have not been positive. Following ill-fated spells at Wycombe Wanderers, Portsmouth and Gabala, the former England international has now found himself in La Liga with Granada, but will be managing in La Liga 2 next season (should he stay on as manager) after the club’s relegation at the end of this season.
On the Mixer Irish Football Podcast this week, we’re joined by Galway United manager Shane Keegan, we react to Martin O’Neill’s latest Ireland squad, plus the usual discussion of League of Ireland matters.