Certainly, these are not the best of times to be an Arsenal fan what with the team’s chances of winning a major trophy already slipping and big players feeling reluctant to sign new contracts. Deja Vu anyone?
History has taught every of the club’s fan to fear contract renewal talks between the team’s players – especially the big ones – and the club management because more often than not, the players in question end up not signing a new deal and eventually leave the club. Febregas, Van Persie, etc
Enter Messrs Mesut Ozil, who along with Chilean Alexis Sanchez, is one of the big stars in the team whose contracts are fast winding down and would leave except new terms are agreed.
Fans have already run the gamut of emotions in relations to the tranfer from the knowing reassured smile to the now almost resignation to fate, the Ozil situation has now given rise to the “will he?”, “won’t he?” questions that run interminably alongside the merest mention of his name.
The player has not helped the situation either. In a recent interview with a German publication called ‘Kicker’ Mesut said the following about a contract extension and his unbridled, unquenchable man-love for Arsene Wenger:
“I am very, very happy at Arsenal and have let the club know I would sign a new contract.
“The fans want that I stay and now it is just down to the club
“The club knows that I am here most of all because of Arsène Wenger. He is the one who signed me and he is the one whose trust I have. The club also knows that I want to be clear what the manager is going to do”
Wenger’s current deal runs out in June, and while the German says he’s happy to commit, he also wants some clarity about the manager’s future too.
Surely, this is a good thing, right? Wrong.
Arsenal is in a dilema. They want Arsene Wenger to leave having failed to win a major trophy since the 2004 but their best player won’t commit except he is sure the manager will stay.
Are they willing to let a genuine world class talent go just to get rid of the manager?
Even letting Wenger go does not solve the problem. First, it has been proven that losing a manager of Wenger’s calibre and experience will immediately set the club some distance. It took Manchester United 2 years before they were able to feature in the champions league after Sir Alex Ferguson left and even at that, they were bundled out in the first round and have been consigned to the Europa League since.
Second, expect other stars like Alexis Sanchez to take a cue and not sign a deal.
In essence, should Arsenal fail to make Arsene continue as manager once the season is over, they should expect a mass exodus of players and a period of crisis.
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