Arsenal legend demands ‘clarity’ on Wenger future
Date published: Friday 3rd March 2017 10:10
Former Arsenal goalkeeper David Seaman has urged the Gunners hierarchy to “just come out” and clarify Arsene Wenger’s future in a bid to stop the growing unrest at the Emirates.
Wenger’s 21-year tenure at Arsenal has come under heavy scrutiny following another tepid Premier League title challenge, with the club currently 13 points behind leaders Chelsea.
They also look certain to be knocked out of the Champions League after losing the first leg of their last-16 tie to Bayern Munich 5-1, a result which further turned the heat up on Wenger.
Seaman, speaking at London’s Football Awards which raises funds for former Gunners goalkeeper Bob Wilson’s charity Willow Foundation, refused to say whether he feels old boss should remain or go, but he is adamant the Frenchman’s future must be resolved as quickly as possible.
Seaman, who played seven of his 13 years at Arsenal under Wenger, said: “I wouldn’t say whether he should stay or leave because I have more respect for the guy.
“He was my coach for six, seven years and we had some great, great times there so I’ll leave it to Arsene, he does that superbly!
“But at the moment it’s the same old, same old and I just want the club to come out and say what’s happening. Is Arsene going to stay or is he going to leave, but just come out and say it because all of the unrest that is happening is just building and building while nobody knows what’s going on.”
The former England number one also feels the uncertainty surrounding Wenger’s future will have a domino effect on the contract negotiations of talisman Alexis Sanchez, whose current deal ends in less than 16 months.
“Well that’s it, if the club come out and say what is happening then we can move on or build on or whatever,” Seaman said.
“But at the moment while nobody knows it doesn’t help. Sanchez is more frustrated, of course he is, he is a quality player, he demands the best from his team-mates and you can see the frustration in him.
“But what will be will be, it’s just that at the end of the season there’s a lot of stuff to be decided and with Arsene, I wish it would be decided really soon.”
Whatever happens with Wenger over the next few months, Seaman still holds the former Monaco coach in high esteem and believes the “brilliant” Frenchman was ahead of his time when he arrived at Highbury in 1996.
“Well in English football he’s been my best club manager that’s all I can say,” said the 53-year-old, who also played for Leeds, Peterborough, Birmingham, QPR and Manchester City.
“With England, Terry Venables was my best England manager but he (Arsene) was totally different to George Graham. George Graham didn’t have the budget that Arsene did but George still won trophies.
“But Arsene was brilliant and he was miles ahead of everybody when he first came. People have caught up and probably gone past but he was brilliant.”