According to The Times (£), there are to be no changes to Arsenal’s coaching staff as all of the men who made up the back-room crew are to be offered new deals.
There had been speculation that a new goalkeeping coach would be sought to replace Gerry Peyton. The Irishman has been suffering from a hip injury and it was thought he might be retiring, but the report says that he, along with Steve Bould, Boro Primorac, Neil Banfield and others will be handed new contracts.
It has been presented as a victory for Arsene Wenger who, they say, was instructed to bring in new faces as part of his contract extension, but who has stood his ground while the club have backed down.
Ivan Gazidis promised a ‘catalyst for change’, and in an interview with the official site after the Frenchman had signed on for another two years said, “We talk continually about how we can evolve and what’s happening in football.
“It’s constantly evolving and we need to be not only evolving with it, but we need to be ahead of it. We’re very conscious of that and we’re going to be very proactive again to improve both on and off the field in all areas.
“Today’s not the day to get into the specifics of that. I think you’ll see that commitment in the months ahead and I think you’ll see that commitment coming into next year.”
Throughout his Arsenal career, Wenger has insisted that the contracts of his assistants are tied to his, to provide security and clarity, so this is not an unusual occurrence.
It remains to be seen, however, if there will be any further additions to the coaching staff or the back-room structures. Talk of a Director of Football was played down but it’s believed there will be some kind of football executive role created to help with player contracts, loan player reporting, and other duties to support the manager.
Ivan Gazidis meets with fans on June 29th for a Q&A session, at which he’s sure to be quizzed about the club’s plans for improvement.