Tony Adams says he will only replace Arsene Wenger as Arsenal manager if he could build a whole new team, admitting that 'no one' could win with the current side

Former captain would demand a radical overhaul of the club's structure

If the pressure finally gets to the Arsenal board, and Arsene Wenger is dismissed as manager or not offered a contract for next season, Tony Adams has thrown his hat into the ring to replace him – but only if he can build a whole new team, as “no one could win” with the current crop.

The former Gunners captain, who is immortalised in statue outside the Emirates, won 10 major trophies in 19 victorious years at the club between 1983 and 2002. But his move into management has been far less successful – relegated with Wycombe Wanderers, and sacked after 16 league matches as permanent Portsmouth manager. His last role was taking charge of FC Gabala in Azerbaijan but he left after an uneventful 18-month spell.

“One hundred per cent I'd like to be Arsenal manager," Adams told zapsportz.com.

"Of course my heart says 'yes, yes, yes', but my head says 'can I win with this current team?' My answer is no, I can't and I am not sure anyone can.

"I would want assurances if I walk through the door, those assurances meaning I'm given the go ahead to build a new team.

"I would get my teeth into building a new team but to achieve that, you would need to spend.

"To keep hitting the top four and qualifying for the Champions League is great, and Arsene has done such a great job, but there is going to come a day, and that won't be far away, when Arsene leaves.

Wenger, who has been in charge at Arsenal since October 1996, and has one year remaining on his contract, has come under renewed criticism for his failure to make any significant signings during the transfer window, with the Arsenal Supporters' Trust declaring it would be currently "inappropriate" to offer him a new deal. Adams believes the man who replaces him will have to take on a different role than the Frenchman’s “one-man band” approach.

"For a long time he has been a one-man band, but that won't happen again. The next man appointed will be the head coach, not the manager."

Adams also believes a change of the club’s wage structure is vital if they are to compete with the elite Premier League teams again.

"I know Arsene would not spend £25million on buying Bayern's goalkeeper Manuel Neuer for example, no matter how much he might need a new keeper," Adams said.

"I think that is a great policy, but the club needs to restructure its wages spend, that is a vastly different matter.

"The club are paying in excess of £150million on players' wages but there have been a lot of average players on £50,000 a week when the big teams now need four or five players on a lot of money.

"Arsenal do not attract those big players because of their wages structure."

If Adams were to manage Arsenal, he says it would be the more defensive-minded approach of his former manager at the club George Graham that he would try to adopt, not the open style Wenger that is an advocate of.

 "Also, Arsene plays too open. I've more of a defensive eye,” Adams added. “That's not to say I would be defensive, but the club have bought too many players like Santi Cazorla and Tomas Rosicky and not enough Patrick Vieira types."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
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

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links