Arsene Wenger may finally call time on his 18-year reign at Arsenal. A Telegraph report says that the Monaco owner, Dmitri Rybololev, wants the Frenchman so badly that he’ll pay as much as 1 million pounds a month to get him. Wenger has refused to have his head turned by overtures from Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain in recent years but Rybololev is encouraged by Wenger’s reluctance to sign a new contract at Arsenal.
Monaco’s league form has been somewhat disappointing. Although Champions League qualification has been secured, they are ten points behind PSG. The owner wants a manager of stature to challenge for the title next season while putting up a strong showing in Europe. Claudio Ranieri is expected to be dismissed before the summer to make way for Wenger’s arrival.
Were he to leave Arsenal, Wenger will be returning to a club he managed for 7 years between 1987 and 1994. Monaco, meanwhile are in a dubious position given UEFA’s financial fair play rules and the exorbitant wages they pay their players. Most notably among them are prolific striker, Radamel Falcao, Portuguese midfielder, Moutinho and the former Porto winger, James Rodriguez.
Meanwhile, the Arsenal midfielder, Abou Diaby, seemed to be back from his long injury layoff. But only for a few days. He was pictured doing some fitness work on the streets of Paris earlier in the week but he has suffered yet another injury setback. The defensive midfielder suffered a slight groin problem during Arsenal’s Under 21’s midweek match against Chelsea. ‘Diaby played one half,’ Wenger said, ‘how far away he is is difficult to say, but he had a little groin problem after the game so will not be available for Monday.’ Wenger didn’t say if Diaby will still be involved this season.
The Frenchman has not played for over a year since suffering a cruciate ligament injury against Swansea in March, 2013. Abou Diaby had been tipped for great things but a series of injuries have curtailed his progress. He is now 27 and Arsenal fans will be hoping he finally repays their patience with good performances.