Could we about to see the return of Wenger?
Since departing the Emirates as Arsenal both, those close to Arsene Wenger have said he has a new lease of life, a pep in his step and a fresh enthusiasm for football – however this could be about to change, with the full force of the PSG project reportedly seeking his services.
A storm has been brewing since Paris coach Thomas Tuchel arrived in the French capital to take over from Unai Emery.
Tuchel and PSG sporting director Antero Henrique are said to be locked in a furious row over the past summer’s transfer activity, rather lack of.
The capital city club are currently flying in Ligue 1, well on track for their sixth league title in the last seven but, with European success is the barometer on which the side marks its progression, Tuchel isn’t happy with recruitment.
In their Champions League defeat to Liverpool at Anfield, a side 9/4 to win the Premier League with William Hill, Tuchel deployed wide-man Angel Di Maria and centre-back Marquinhos in a midfield trio next Adrien Rabiot, perhaps a message to PSG’s hierarchy.
According to reports in France, Wenger has been linked with replacing Henrique as PSG sporting director but moved to a more lofty position closer to Qatari chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi – this would not only overseeing recruitment, but the entire direction of the club.
Wenger hit the ground running in the Premier League, bringing with him new working methods and had a superb eye for a player. However, later in his Arsenal things began to unravel and his coaching seemed to become less effective.
The French manager practically built the Emirates from the pitch onwards, adhering to strict budgets while remaining in the CL. However, with PSG’s budget behind him, not having to worry about day-to-day coaching, this could be the perfect role for the football veteran.
Wenger has long been thought of as much more than a manager, a football philosopher with his hand on the pulse, anticipating the way football was heading – taking a long term approach that PSG could benefit from.
In their search of European domination, the Parisians have pulled the trigger on big buys like Kylian Mbappe and Neymar, but are now without depth, having to sell players to conform with Financial Fair Play.
In their search of European domination, the Parisians have pulled the trigger on big buys like Kylian Mbappe and Neymar.
Under a potential new regime under Wenger, you would expect him to steady the ship and build slowly, trusting youth and team chemistry above star-power.
PSG might reportedly want Wenger, but does Wenger want to step back into the relentless and ruthless football business so soon after leaving North London?
He seems to be enjoying flying around he world in a sort of football ambassadorial role and is unlikely to step into management, so a move upstairs into the organisational side of things could appeal.
However, PSG just doesn’t seem like the right fit for the 68-year-old. With unrest at Monaco and Leonardo Jardim reportedly on the verge of leaving the Principality club, don’t be surprised if Wenger is linked with a move back to the Stade Louis II, with a board role.