With Arsenal’s season being derailed yet again, the top brass at the club are looking at Inter Milan boss Roberto Mancini as a possible replacement for long-serving manager Arsene Wenger, according to reports from Italy.
Until recently, Arsenal were in the running for a number of trophies — the Premier League, the FA Cup, and the Champions League. They were especially expected to do well in the Premier League, with regular contenders Chelsea and Manchester United faltering in their campaigns, and Manchester City struggling to remain in the top two.
However, a poor run of form in February saw the Gunners slip back to the third position, 11 points behind table toppers Leicester City, having played one game less than them. Their Champions League hopes were also blown away with a 5-1 aggregate loss to Barcelona in the Round of 16 stage of the competition.
The FA Cup, where Arsenal had not lost for almost three years, was their one hope for silverware, much like in the previous two seasons. However, that too was conceded with the quarter final defeat at the hands of Watford.
Wenger, who’s contract with Arsenal runs out at the end of the 2017 season, had indicated before that he may retire from football management. Arsenal have been looking at possible replacement for the Frenchman, and are viewing Mancini as a possible replacement for Wenger, according to a report in Italian paper Corriere dello Sport [via Football Italia].
Interestingly, Manicni’s contract with Inter Milan also runs out at the end of the 2017 season, which means that the Gunners would not have to buy out his contract with the Nerazzurri.
Are the Gunners forgoing style for silverware?
One distinguishing factor about Arsenal during Wenger’s reign has been the fact that the Frenchman has never been prepared to compromise on the quality of the attacking football dished out by his team in order to get more wins on the board. In spite of being criticised by fans and pundits alike, Wenger has not wavered in his philosophy.
Mancini on the other hand, has come under some criticism for his pragmatic approach to the game with Inter Milan this season. It would be interesting to see what kind of approach the Italian employs, if he were to be assigned to the hotseat at the Emirates.