We Have Not Yet Offered Wenger A New Contract -Arsenal CEO Gazidis Claims
Arsenal CEO Ivan Gazidis has told supporters that no decision has been made about the future of manager Arsene Wenger, but the team’s current slump would be “a catalyst for change.”
According to reports, Gazidis attended a scheduled meeting with members of several fan groups at the Emirates amid increasing calls for Wenger to step down at the end of the season.
The report claims he repeated a previous message from chairman Chips Keswick that a decision about Wenger would be “mutual” and communicated “at the right time.”
Gazidis added that the downturn in form that has seen Arsenal lose four of their last five Premier League games and crash 10-2 on aggregate to Bayern Munich in the Champions League, would spark change — but that change would not necessarily involve the manager.
The meeting came amid heightening tensions over Wenger and widespread criticism of the way the board has handled the situation.
Gazidis said the current mood was “like trying to land a plane in a crosswind with all the passengers in the cockpit with you.”
He was presented with a survey by the Arsenal Supporters Trust showing that 78 percent of respondents do not think the club should offer Wenger a new two-year contract.
A protest march was also planned before Sunday’s home game against Manchester City, while some supporters hired a van bearing anti-Wenger messages to be driven around North London.
Gazidis said fans’ opinions would be considered, but that the decision on Wenger would be made in the best long-term interest of the club.