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Arsenal 'to target Massimiliano Allegri as their priority target' if Arsene Wenger leaves this summer

Juventus boss reported to be ahead of Thomas Tuchel and Diego Simeone on Arsenal's wish list

Jack de Menezes
Saturday 04 March 2017 11:54 GMT
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Massimiliano Allegri is top of Arsenal's manager target list if Arsene Wenger leaves this summer
Massimiliano Allegri is top of Arsenal's manager target list if Arsene Wenger leaves this summer (Getty)

Arsenal are leaning towards Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri as the favoured replacement for Arsene Wenger, should the Frenchman decide to leave the club after 20 years at the end of the season.

Wenger is currently assessing his future and is yet to decide if he will take up Arsenal’s offer of a two-year contract extension, with his current deal set to expire in the summer. The Gunners currently have no back-up plan should Wenger decide not to renew his contract, which has led to the board starting to make noises about potential replacements that could be targeted as their next manager.

As The Independent reported last month, those close to Wenger still have no idea what he will do, but it now appears that Arsenal are beginning to cast their eyes over potential replacements.

The Sun claims that of the manager shortlist drawn up by the board, Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri is the favoured option, should the Italian be willing to leave the reigning Serie A champions. It’s also added that Arsenal would still target Borussia Dortmund manager Thomas Tuchel and Atletico Madrid’s Diego Simeone, should they meet any resistance in their pursuit of Allegri.

Wenger faces a pivotal run of games that could go a long way to deciding whether he stays of goes come the end of the season. With Arsenal taking on Liverpool on Saturday, the loser faces the prospect of falling away from the top four and subsequent Champions League football next season – something that Wenger has never failed to achieve in every one of his 20 full seasons at the helm.

The Gunners then take on Bayern Munich in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie that already looks a lost cause following the 5-1 thrashing at the Allianz Arena three weeks ago, before taking on non-league Lincoln City next weekend in an effort to reach the FA Cup semi-finals – the one trophy that Arsenal look capable of winning this season.

The report goes on to add that Allegri is considering a move to the Premier League after falling out with a number of Juventus players this season, having recently dropped defender Leonardo Bonucci after a heated verbal dispute.

Despite leading Serie A by seven points with a sixth consecutive Scudetto success on the cards and a 2-0 advantage over Porto in the Champions League last-16, it’s reported that this season will be Allegri’s last in Turin and that he will seek an exit in the summer.

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