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Gazidis: Wenger going nowhere
Published : 21 Sep 2011 09:35:33Rss feed
Ivan Gazidis is sure Arsene Wenger will not walk out on Arsenal and fully expects the Gunners boss to honour his contract - even if England come calling for him next summer.
Wenger is under mounting pressure after overseeing the club's worst start to a season in 58 years. With five Barclays Premier League games gone, Arsenal have just one win to their name - against newly-promoted Swansea - and sit 17th in the table.
"He is not going to walk out," Gazidis said. "There is absolutely no issue about Arsene leaving the club or the club pushing him out. He did not suddenly become a bad manager or somebody who became out of touch with the game. It is complete nonsense."
Wenger's 15 years in English football means he is likely to be considered as a potential replacement for England manager Fabio Capello.
The Italian's contract expires next summer, but Gazidis made his position clear when he was asked whether the club had considered the prospect of Wenger being on the Football Association's shortlist next year.
"He is under contract to Arsenal and he always honours his contract. It's not an issue," he said.
Much of the fans' anger stems from Wenger's refusal, unlike many of his rivals, to sanction big-money signings. That anger was greater than ever this summer as the Frenchman could only sign the likes of Yossi Benayoun and Mikel Arteta after seeing Samir Nasri and Cesc Fabregas depart for Manchester City and Barcelona respectively.
"Some people have the perception that there was some panic buying in the window but that's not what happened," Gazidis said. "We obviously had an uncertainty about Fabregas and Nasri. Ideally we would have liked them resolved earlier for proper value but we are the ones who know what really happened in all of that."
Gazidis moved to ease supporters' concerns by promising that Wenger will have major funds available to him when the transfer window opens in January.
"We have kept some powder dry and we have done that deliberately because of how the market was this summer," Gazidis added. "I don't want to build up expectations but certainly in January and next summer there are funds available to invest in a significant way to bolster the team."