The pros and cons of Arsene Wenger as Arsenal boss

The veteran manager has agreed a new contract with the Gunners, but was it the right thing to do?

Arsene Wenger, Arsenal
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has been at the club for 21 seasons
(Image credit: Clive Mason/Getty)

Wenger looks even more out of date after Moyes and Allardyce quit

24 May

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger may be feeling short of friends after what could go down as his worst season as Gunners boss.

With many fans turning against him and star players heading for the exit, he also finds himself an increasingly isolated figure in the world of Premier League management, particularly since the resignations of David Moyes and Sam Allardyce.

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Allardyce, who has quit as Crystal Palace manager, was always a thorn in Wenger's side, but at least he was of almost the same vintage. The same goes for Moyes.

The departure of those two old stagers leaves Wenger with few, if any, rivals from his era.

Wenger's managerial career began with Nancy in France in the mid-1980s - so long ago that most other current Premier League managers, the likes of Pep Guardiola, Mauricio Pochettino and Eddie Howe, had not even begun their playing careers.

When Wenger arrived at Arsenal in 1996, only Tony Pulis and Sam Allardyce of last season's crop of Premier League bosses were already in the management game.

Even the likes of Ronald Koeman and Jose Mourinho did not become managers until the turn of the century.

But although Allardyce and Moyes are now gone, Wenger will be able to reminisce about the 1990s with Rafa Benitez when he brings his Newcastle side to the top flight next season.

He could also talk to Claude Puel if he remains in charge of Southampton, although they are more likely to discuss the years Puel spent as a player under Wenger at Monaco between 1987 and 1994.

Mark Hughes is the only other top-flight manager who dates back to the last century, but he was still playing for Southampton when he took over as Wales manager in 1999 and went on to play for Everton and Blackburn before calling it quits.

Wenger is looking increasingly as a man out of time and if he does decide to stay on as Arsenal boss next season, he will not have anyone of the same age to play with.

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