With all the speculation around Arsene Wenger’s future it’s time for serious consideration with regards to who will replace him.
It wasn’t too long ago that I struggled to imagine life without Wenger: who would replace him and how would he replace him? Now however, as Arsenal drift away from the Premiership summit, even I am left wondering if in fact a change at the top would help give the team a new energy and purpose.
When Jordi Gomez coolly swept in his penalty, late on in normal time of yesterday’s FA Cup semi-final, the fans and Wenger could both feel the end was drawing near, not only for the season but possibly for le Professeur’s career. Thankfully, Per Mertersacker redeemed himself and Lukasz Fabianski continued his fine run in the cup, leaving Wenger and Arsenal to fight another day.
But all of this has made me wonder, who will be the right man to take Arsenal forward when Wenger does stop?
For me, the answer is easy, Jürgen Klopp.
The German has been hugely successful with Borussia Dortmund, he promotes a similar style of passing football and considering how long he has been with Dortmund now, he could be enticed to take on a new challenge in arguably the best league in the world.
While the football philosophy of both managers promote is similar, Klopp has already said he prefers a more aggressive style to that of his French counterpart. Earlier this season, before the two teams met in the Champions League group stage he described how his style differs, "It is not serenity football, it is fighting football – that is what I like.”
Based on Arsenal’s recent capitulation in the league (and nearly in the FA Cup) that is exactly what they need. For so long Wenger’s silent and pensive figure on the touchline has calmed Arsenal fans and reassured the players. Now however, they need something else, they need that fight that Klopp brings to each game.
Wenger deserves another season to prove he can do it with his new Arsenal team, with new spending power. However, when the time comes for him to go, I hope it’s Klopp who comes into replace him, to bring a new energy to the Gunners.