"We are in no hurry. We are in September and my contract finishes in June. There is a long way to go," Wenger said.
"There is no need to plan (any talks).”
The longest-serving boss in the Premier League has kept his stance on his contract all year, despite his current deal’s imminent expiry next year. The 63-year-old Frenchman has maintained he will only renew his contract if he believes it is in the club’s best interest, and he will not allow his future to interfere with the present in North London.
Earlier on this summer and throughout last season, tensions between the club and sections of its fan base were intensified by the club’s reluctance to spend money on players with calls for the manager to be ousted along with the board, the chief executive and the owner could be heard.
However, flash forward to today and the Gunners presented their record signing Mesut Ozil for his first press conference after his £42.5 million move from Real Madrid – the optimism and positivity emanating from the club now has all but destroyed the lack of faith and trust that had been palpable just a few days prior to the German’s deadline day signing on a five-year deal.
Meanwhile, Ozil has revealed in the last week since his move that it was Wenger himself who convinced the 24-year-old that Arsenal was the best place for him to express himself – the boss’ faith and trust was the decisive factor in the playmaker’s move after he felt le lost the faith and trust previously afforded to him in the Spanish capital following the arrival of Isco and Gareth Bale.
Wenger’s record of developing talent over 16-year reign at Arsenal is near-untouchable – the likes of Dennis Bergkamp, Thierry Henry, Robert Pires, Patrick Vieira, Cesc Fabregas, Ashley Cole, Samir Nasri, Robin van Persie and now Jack Wilshere have become some of the most esteemed and coveted talents in the world under Wenger’s mentorship.
Mesut Ozil cited Wenger a the key component of his decision to move and I suspect that Wenger will want to keep his promise to the player and develop him further to reach his full potential for both club and country.
Meanwhile, as we saw with the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United, manager’s as highly regarded as Wenger prefer to go out on a high note – Ferguson reclaimed the Premier League title last term after signing Robin van Persie.
Ozil’s signing would hint that Wenger intends to stay beyond 2014 but, I suppose, if you take Ferguson’s retirement as a model, Ozil’s signing could lead Arsenal to that elusive trophy and he could feel at that point it may be time to move on.
However, Wenger is just under a decade Ferguson’s junior and clearly still has the hunger, desire, and passion for management at the highest level – I would expect, so long as he still has the trust of the fans and the club, he’ll opt to stay on a while longer at the Emirates where he’ll be hopeful of bringing the pride and the glory back for long last.
image: © dyobmit