Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has no interest in helping Gunners chiefs find his eventual successor, instead choosing to focus all his energy on making a success of what looks likely to be his final contract in charge at the Emirates.
That is according to to Evening Standard's chief football correspondent James Olley, who shared during a live webchat yesterday that he believes Wenger has actively distanced himself from the process of selecting the man to continue his fine work in North London.
Wenger has taken a hands-on approach to every aspect of life at Arsenal since taking over in 1996, including playing an active part in the design of the Emirates Stadium and the training base at London Colney. Things seem to be changing though, which means Arsenal's board will have to step up and recruit their next manager without Wenger's direct assistance.
Academy set-up a prominent example
Arsenal have handed Wenger almost unprecedented power to steer the club in the direction he sees fit over the last decade, but there have been signs over the last 12 months that his omnipotent position has been changed.
Wenger signed a new three-year contract last summer after deciding he was the man to build on last season's long-awaited FA Cup success, but he took a backseat when it came to shaking up an academy setup that has failed to meet high standards in recent years.
Wenger has learned lesson from Man United debacle
One look at the way Sir Alex Ferguson's plans for life after his retirement at Manchester United make Wenger's decision not to get involved look like a smart one.
Ferguson handpicked David Moyes to take over at Old Trafford, but he lasted just nine months and made United's commitment to building long-term look utterly ridiculous.
Arsenal have a very difficult decision to make when Wenger finally does walk away, most likely in 2017 at the end of his current three-year deal.
Wenger could advise them to look at a former Arsenal player with an appreciation of the history of the club, or a proven world-class coach like Pep Guardiola, but ultimately his informed opinion shouldn't be allowed to influence the final decision.
Arsenal's board have to reach the decision themselves, which is a scary prospect for Gunners fans which may force them to indulge in a classic piece of revisionism and consider what a magnificent job Wenger has truly done for the club.
Arsenal fans, who do you think is the right man to replace Wenger and should be involved in the selection process? Have your say by responding in the comment box below!
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