Arsene Wenger's future will depend on how Arsenal perform this season - and how £42.5m signing Mesut Ozil settles in

Frenchman's contract runs out in June and he is not in talks over a new deal

Arsene Wenger’s future at Arsenal will be determined by the success of the new team he will build around Mesut Ozil.

The Arsenal manager has just one year left on his contract at the Emirates but said he would consider how well the team has done this season before committing himself to the club for the future. Arsenal have not won a major trophy - or finished in the top two in the Premier League - for eight years, but with the £42.5m arrival of Ozil from Real Madrid, optimism is back.

The decision on Wenger’s future, then, will not be made until it is clear how good this new Arsenal team is.

“We are in no hurry,” Wenger said. “We are in September and my contract finishes in June. There's a long way to go. There is no need to plan.”

The performance of the team, he said, will be the decisive factor.

“I have said many times I want to do well with this club and in the end I will sit down and think how well have I done with the team I have had. That has to be sufficient for me to decide yes or no.”

When asked again whether the team’s success would decide his future, Wenger was clear: “One of the main judgements you can have about a manager is how well he does with his team.”

The last few years have not been particularly successful at Arsenal, with no trophy since the FA Cup in 2005 and only third or fourth finishes in the Premier League since then too. But Wenger can point to the signing of Ozil – for almost three-times the previous club record fee – as a message suggesting a new era of success and optimism at the Emirates after a period of enforced austerity.

“We had to go through some years when I signed a long-term contract where we had some restricted financial potential. And the target was to stay in the Champions League in this period and we managed to do it. We are now in a strong position financially.” 

Wenger had acquired a reputation as a man reluctant to spend money but insisted that spending the £42.5m sat easily with him, as his main issue is with teams heavily spending borrowed or benefactor wealth.

“Not at all,” Wenger said, when asked if the fee jarred with him. “There are two things that are completely different. One, I fight for the teams to spend the money they had made and not the money they have artificially earned. Once they have made that money I am happy to spend it.”

Beyond that, Wenger was keen only to spend big on the very best players, as he has now done.

“As you know as well, what is very important for us is to find world-class players. There are not plenty around. The best thing is to spend the money in a very efficient way that means you strengthen the team and spend the money you can afford. I'm confident that with Ozil we have done that.” 

Wenger admitted his surprise that Real Madrid let Ozil go, and suggested it was because having signed Isco and Gareth Bale, they needed to get rid of some of their star attackers.

“Honestly I think it was linked with the Bale transfer. I don't know exactly what happened inside the club in Madrid. Was it down to financial reasons? Was it down to the fact that when they bought Bale they had Isco and they had to let somebody go? I was surprised, yes.”

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor