By Adam Up


Untold Gooner News video: A lesson in how to silence the critics


The Daily Mirror has done an update of the list of men said to be “in the running” for the job of Arsenal coach, and what do you know.  Although the list is remarkably similar to the list we ran on this site on 30 November it is now even bigger, having now reach 14 candidates.

And of course any event involving Arsenal gives a chance for those who wish to portray Arsenal as being totally mired in chaos and ineptitude to push their ceaseless message once more.   In this case we have Read Arsenal running the headline

“Tragedy incoming” – these Arsenal fans are fearing the worst as the Gunners’ shock interest in manager is confirmed 

Now this is interesting because the entire source of this story is a single Twitter account called Get French Football News and it reads, in its entirity

“Breaking | Bordeaux manager Paulo Sousa’s entourage has confirmed interest from Arsenal to L’Équipe. More follows.”

And that is it.  There might be a story about this in L’Équipe but I can’t find it, and there might be more to follow but I can’t find that either.  And who exactly is the entourage, and who from Arsenal called them to confirm interest?   For all we know there might have been no such call, or it could have been a hoax call, or the tweet could be totally made up.

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Also coming just from a tweet is the news that David Ornstein has proclaimed that “I’ve been told that Mikel Arteta is the number one target for Arsenal now. Patrick Vieira is in the frame too…”

Now Ornstein is a pretty regular twit user since he moved from the BBC to the Athletic and he does seem to cover his tracks a lot, not least this time by naming five candidates.  Of course journalists don’t reveal their sources, however although that used to be in order to protect them, that’s now more likely because some of them are so unreliable (like being other twitter accounts) that it is best not to.

Here are their details of all the bandied about names thus far….

Vieira: Arsenal ready to talk to him.  

Marceilino: They have begun the interview process 

Arteta: A feeling this could be too much of a gamble but they are confident he would come.

Ancelotti: could soon become available amid a difficult time in Italy. 

Pochettino: might have to wait until the summer

Allegri: his lack of English is a problem, given the difficulties Emery had.

Paulo Sousa of Bordeaux and previously Swansea boss – on the long list   

Roberto Martinez, on the long list of people to talk to.

Freddie Ljungberg: no longer so strongly considered as a possible long term candidate.

And here is the updated list with all the prime details we’ve been able to find

Next Arsenal manager…

No. Manager Source They cite as their source Notes
1 Massimilliano Allegri Star, Mirror La Gazetto dello Sport. Sky Sports have him shortlisted Out of work.  Was Juventus manager.  Mirror says AFC board thought he was arrogant.
2 Carlo Ancelotti Football Fancast Telegraph.  Sky Sports have him shortlisted Won CL with Milan and Real Mad, currently struggling at Napoli.  Just Arsenal News says “he’s not youth orientated enough”
3 Phil Antwi Birmingham Live He’s Wolverhampton’s youth scout.  Probably not really wanted as manager – more a, well, youth scout.
4 Mikel Arteta Football London; Le Grove Sky Sports says he is shortlisted. They also say he doesn’t look particularly bothered about it
NEW Rafael Benitez Mirror Metro says he has responded. Now with Chinese Super League club Dalian Yifang
6 Freddie Ljungberg Football Insider No one.  They “understand” this is the case. “Just like Ole-Gunnar Solskjaer”
7 Marcelino García Toral Sun Football365 Valencia manager 2017-19
NEW Roberto Martinez Mirror “On the long list” Manager of Belgium
9 Vitor Pereira Telegraph Gooner News Shanghai SIPG
10 Mauricio Pochettino TBR Football Eurosport “He’s available”
11 Brendan Rodgers Daily Record Charlie Nicholas also tips him He’s probably too expensive for Arsenal (£14m compensation)
12 Nuno Espirito Santo Sports Mole Wolverhampton W WW will “fight” to keep him
13 Patrick Vieira Evening Standard David Seaman He’s a born leader
14 Chris Wilder Yorkshire Post Peter Crouch Currently at Sheffield United

With Arsenal now having won a match with Freddie in control, and won it in the second half with quite a lot of vim and gusto it appears (according to the pundits) that the Arsenal board are full of additional relaxation and not in a rush to get things done.

So, with just one position up for grabs the number of people on the list is smaller than the number of players who are tipped to be joining us each summer (normally over 100) but still 14 is not so bad.  At least it shows the inventors of nonsense are up and about and indeed running around a bit.  I wouldn’t like to think that they had given up on their utterly pointless job of making up stories.  Otherwise how could they ever justify their positions and their salaries?