No Decision Yet Over New Arsenal Contract
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger will decide his future at the end of the season. The Frenchman saw his chance of a Champions League triumph evaporate in the Allianz Arena with a 5-1 defeat to Bayern Munich on Wednesday night. That has led to speculation about a possible exit when his contract expires in the summer.
But the BBC reports today that no decision has been made by Wenger about his future and he is unlikely to make any decision before the end of the season.
Wenger waited until the last-minute decision the last time his contract expired which was in 2014. On that occasion, he waited until the Gunners had secured the FA Cup – their first piece of silverware in nine years – with a 3-2 victory over Hull City.
Arsenal have put an offer on the table to Wenger. The offer has been there since earlier this season. But the Frenchman will once again wait until the campaign is over before deciding whether or not to put pen to paper.
It had been thought that Wenger would sign the contract during next month’s international break. That would accelerate a new contract for one of Arsenal’s star players, Mesut Ozil. The German – along with Chile international Alexis Sanchez – is out of contract at the end of next season. Ozil has suggested that he will make a decision when Wenger does, the inference being that he will sign on the dotted line only when the Arsenal boss does.
But Arsenal’s season is slowly unravelling. Their Champions League hopes are in tatters and a seventh consecutive elimination at the last 16 stage looks likely. They lie in fourth place in the Premier League but are ten points behind leaders Chelsea. Their only realistic chance of honours this season is in the FA Cup. The Gunners face a trip to non-league Sutton United in a fifth-round tie on Monday night.
Sanchez Off To Italy
One player unlikely to feature in Monday’s tie is Alexis Sanchez. The Chilean was spotted at Heathrow Airport this morning. He has been given permission by the club to go on a short break to Italy along with his best friend, an Italian.
The choice of Italy is likely to fuel further speculation about Sanchez’s future. Two clubs are being linked with a possible transfer bid: Manchester City and Serie A side Juventus.
Alexis Sanchez has been granted leave with the club's permission. Travelled to Italy with his best friend today for a short break. pic.twitter.com/fJXctZFKDH
— Chris Wheatley (@ChrisWheatley_) February 16, 2017