Alright, alright – why should any Chelsea fan care about whether Arsene Wenger gets the boot when Chelsea win at Wembley on Saturday? Surely sticking another one to Arsene will be pleasurable, the sight of him and his team collecting a runners up medal each a beautiful sight? And, if it means he gets sacked in the coming days, well that’s OK isn’t it?
Actually no, far from it. I am not for one minute suggesting that it would better for Arsenal to be lifting the FA Cup come Saturday night, but we should be wary of Chelsea’s victory being so resounding that it is the final kick in the nether regions for Arsene’s time at the Emirates.
Look at who might take over
Well, if Arsene gets the sack take a look at the managers being allegedly lined up to replace him. Let’s be honest, let’s pretend for a moment that Chelsea were having to replace Antonio this summer. We’d be alright with Simeone, Allegri or Tuchel taking over, wouldn’t we? Without a doubt, the first two of that trio are two of the finest managers in the game currently and whichever club they sign for will be immediately strengthened.
They’ll have money to spend
Wenger is a one-off with his frugal, slow to react in the transfer market ways. It used to work, but as we keep getting reminded from North London, Roman changed the game. Money talks now and Arsenal do have a fair bit of it tucked away. Get rid of the man sleeping with the combination to the safe under his pillow and the right manager is going to have quite the war chest to go and spend. And, we have to accept, that top players are going to be attracted to playing for Arsenal with the right man in charge.
Big signings might see their better players stay
Or should that be better player? Alexis Sanchez is happy in London, which is why a transfer to Stamford Bridge is not completely pigs might fly kind of talk. Just for a second imagine that Juventus’ Max Allegri takes over, or even Luis Enrique, and that is enough to persuade, I don’t know, say Kylian Mbappe to come and play in the Premier League and then Dybala appears and maybe even a couple more of the Monaco and Ajax kindergartens? It’s a different prospect we’d be facing then, and that could well be enough to see Sanchez stay put.
The weaker players will leave
You can’t really see a more modern manager putting up with some of that dead wood, can you? I mean, would Conte find a place for Ozil? Hell no. I cannot see Mesut putting a shift in for Simeone, or Aaron Ramsey quite being a like for like replacement for Andres Iniesta in Enrique’s Arsenal, can you? There would be a gradual clear out and Arsenal would be stronger just for that.
Even if no transfers happen…
We know Arsenal’s squad isn’t that bad. With a better manager, a more modern manager who isn’t so blinkered, they might be able to turn Arsenal into proper title challengers just by not being Arsene.
So that is the case for Chelsea scraping a 2-1 win, but allowing Arsenal to possibly think they have the moral victory. It would make next season much easier to be facing an Arsene XI once more, rather than an Allegri XI with Bonucci strolling out from the back or a Luis Enrique XI with Luis Suarez fancying another nibble at the English game.
Come on Blues, you know how to play this one.