Less than a week on after announcing his shock departure from Arsenal, Arsene Wenger has been talking about his possible next destination when he finally leaves the Emirates Stadium this summer.
Wenger is likely to be a man in demand despite his recent struggles with the Gunners, with no shortage of clubs willing to employ his services given his vast experience and achievements.
Everton were among those rumoured to be interested in the Frenchman. Farhad Moshiri, a former Arsenal shareholder of course, is believed to be a big fan of the 68-year-old and is considering him as a potential replacement for Sam Allardyce in the summer.
The reaction from supporters has been mixed, with some seeing someone of Wenger’s experience as the ideal man to rebuild the squad and lay foundations for the future. Others point to Wenger’s recent record and argue a younger, long-term replacement is needed to drive the club forward.
That debate now appears redundant, with Wenger’s latest comments suggesting a move to Merseyside isn’t on his radar.
Speaking his a news conference ahead of Thursday’s Europa League semi-final, Wenger said:
“I hope these are not my last European cup games – my target is to play in Europe again.
“I’ve had no break [from football management] for 35 years. You can look around, and that doesn’t exist. I don’t know now how addicted I am. I am like a guy who plays Russian roulette every week and suddenly has no gun. I will see how much I miss that gun.”
Everton aren’t going to be in Europe next year, so if you take Wenger’s comments literally he isn’t Goodison bound.
Whether he could be persuaded north by the challenge of rebuilding the club over two or three seasons remains to be seen.
However, my hunch is that Wenger won’t end up at Everton this summer. He is likely to want join a side already in the Champions League, perhaps back in his native France.
I’m tempted to side with those fans who believe a young up-and-coming manager is needed to galvanise the squad after this most bruising of seasons.