Wenger hints decision on future could come in March

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Arsene Wenger’s future won’t be decided until the end of the season, according to the BBC’s David Ornstein although the boss has hinted he may decide earlier.

Arsenal’s latest crushing defeat at the hands of Bayern Munich has seen speculation mount that the Frenchman could draw an end to his 20-year tenure at the club this summer even though a new two-year deal is understood to be on the table from the board.

Wenger has stubbornly refused to talk about whether he’ll sign a new deal when questioned by the British press. However, on Tuesday night (before the 5-1 defeat) he told German television station ZDF that a decision could be made in March or April. Whether his verdict is then made public remains to be seen.

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A snippet of the ZDF interview translated by @LGAmbrose

All football fans are asking whether you’ll be on the bench for Champions League again next season.

AW: That’s the problem with age! I think the only interesting thing is that Arsenal play well tomorrow. I’m happy as manager and happy at Arsenal, and we’ll see how that (tomorrow) goes

When will you decide?

AW: March/April probably.

And it is still completely open?

AW: Always

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It’s been rumoured that the Gunners hierarchy has drawn up a list of potential candidates to succeed Wenger, although owner Stan Kroenke would prefer the 67-year-old to stay. The likes of Max Allegri, Ralph Hasenhüttl, Thomas Tuchel, Diego Simeone and Eddie Howe have all made been linked in recent months.

Any departure will obviously bring with it huge upheaval. An unavoidable shadow will be cast over the future of first team players, backroom staff and potentially higher up the food chain at board level. Has enough groundwork been done to prepare ourselves? Is Arsene ready to pass on the baton? Are the board strong enough to cope without him? Could they even change tact and nudge him towards a departure? Will he sign a new deal?

There are so many unanswered questions right now.

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