Despite his status as a club legend, Arsene Wenger is not the most popular man at Arsenal right now after another series of disappointments have seen the Gunners underachieve once again.
And if today’s story from Catalan newspaper SPORT is true, Gunners all across the world will have even more reason to be displeased with the Frenchman.
That is because according to SPORT, it was Wenger who blocked any hopes Arsenal had of landing Pep Guardiola in 2016. The newspaper claims that chiefs at Arsenal tried to convince him to leave a year earlier than the expiration of his contract, so that they would have a chance to recruit Guardiola when he became available after leaving Bayern Munich.
Although City was his most likely destination due to the presence of many of his allies, including Ferran Soriano and Txiki Begiristain, it is said that Pep has always considered Arsenal a club he could see himself at due to their commitment to young players, something the Catalan boss values highly as we’re now seeing at Manchester City.
However, when it was suggested to Wenger that he step aside a year before the end of his contract in order to motivate Guardiola to join the North London club, the Arsenal boss refused and there ended any chances they had of signing Pep.
Guardiola joined City in the summer of 2016 and now appears to be in it for the long haul, regularly talking of a long-term plan and a vision spanning well beyond his current contract. However, City might have had serious domestic competition for the 46-year-old had Wenger not refused to budge.