It’s being said more and more that there’s a good chance Arsene Wenger will move on from Arsenal after this season. A decent list of potential replacements has grown in the past few months. I’ve looked at a few of those candidates, estimated how likely it is that they’ll be Arsenal’s next manager (based off of betting odds), and conducted a little research into their backgrounds.
Carlo Ancelotti – 22%
Ancelotti has been a frontrunner in the discussion for a while. He was most recently the manager of Bayern Munich until being let go after a 3-0 loss to PSG in the Champions League Group Stage. He started out in Italy, working his way up to Juventus and ultimately AC Milan. That’s where he spent the majority of his coaching career (8 years). While he could only help Milan to one Serie A title, he did have them crowned European Champions twice. From there, he moved onto Chelsea, PSG, Real Madrid, and then Bayern Munich, never staying with a team for more than two years. In those final 8 years, he added 3 league titles and 1 more Champions League title to his resume.
Joachim Low – 18%
Low has a decade of experience coaching various clubs across Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and other parts of Europe. While he’s never coached what would be considered a “big” club, he’s the current manager of arguably the best national team in the world. He’s been Germany’s manager for 12 years, winning the World Cup in 2014. While he’s been great at handling Germany’s vast pool of talented players, for me, it’s hard to believe a man who’s over a decade removed from club football could come into one of the biggest clubs in Europe. But, maybe there are more similarities between national and club football than I’m aware of.
Diego Simeone – 15%
Simeone coached some of the top clubs in Argentina before finding his current and longest-served position as manager of Atletico Madrid. Simeone came into the club in the middle of a rough season and has helped steer them towards of the top of the table. The club hadn’t finished any higher than 4th since their 01-02 championship season. In the past five seasons, the club has finished 3rd 4 times and 1st 1 time. They’ve also won the Europa League and made it to the Champions League Final twice. He’s turned the club from Real Madrid’s little brother into serious contenders for any given trophy.
Leonardo Jardim – 14%
A relatively young manager, Jardim actually has a good amount of experience managing several European clubs. He’s had the most success at his current club, Monaco (one of Wenger’s old clubs). If you never got to witness the Monaco team of 16/17, you certainly missed out. Led by the likes of Mbappe, Falcao, and Lemar, Monaco was an incredibly fast, dangerous attacking team. They won Ligue 1 but were knocked out in the Champions League semi-finals by Juventus. His free, attacking style is often compared with Wenger’s early days with Henry and co.
Mikel Arteta – 12%
The first ex-Arsenal man on the list is Mikel Arteta. He appeared for Arsenal over 100 times during his 5 years with the club. Since 2016, he’s been studying under Pep Guardiola at Manchester City. There’s no doubt that getting to coach under Pep will do wonders for his managing career in the future. However, it seems too soon to throw him the reigns at a big club like Arsenal. I wouldn’t mind seeing him brought on as assistant manager though.
Thierry Henry – 8%
The club’s all-time goalscorer has had more mentions in this conversation than I thought he would get. The question has been, is it worth the risk? On one hand, Henry is someone who continues to show passion for Arsenal and would without a doubt demand respect and pride from the players. The buzz around the club with Henry as manager might be enough to have him sign. But, he only has managerial experience with the Belgian National Team as an assistant. If he weren’t already associated with the club, it would be ludicrous to hire someone with such a short coaching resume, similar to Arteta.
Massimiliano Allegri – 6%
Before introducing the last and final ex-Arsenal man of the bunch, we’ll look at Allegri. He went straight into managing after almost 2 decades of being a player, coaching the team he ended his career with for 2 years. He has managed across several of the tiers in Italy, working his way up to AC Milan, and currently managing Juventus. He led Milan to a title and has been at Juventus for their past 3 out of 6 titles on the trot. The only trophy that has avoided him to this point is the Champions League. He’s been a runner-up with Juventus twice and probably wants to make one final push for it before moving to a new project.
Patrick Vieira – 5%
The Arsenal legend also went on to management at Manchester City similar to Arteta, working among their reserves. Since 2016, he’s been in the States managing Man City’s American club, New York City FC. They’ve been performing near the top level of the MLS but haven’t been able to win a championship yet. While the Premier League is one million miles ahead of the MLS in terms of competition, Vieira’s experience as a player (over 200 appearances for Arsenal) in the Premier League might serve him well. Plus, New York City FC has attracted some of the best talent in the MLS, like David Villa and Andrea Pirlo. To see any of the Arsenal legends back at the Emirates would be a sight to see, but I don’t believe any of them are quite ready to take on the project.