Liverpool legend issues stark warning to Arsenal fans
John Barnes has warned Arsenal fans to be careful what they wish for with Arsene Wenger's future
John Barnes has warned Arsenal fans to be careful what they wish for amid the speculation surrounding Arsene Wenger’s future at the club.
Some Arsenal fans expressed their discontent with Wenger at various stages of last season as the Gunners ended up without a trophy.
Wenger is preparing to enter into the final year of his contract as Arsenal manager, and with his future unclear, next season could end up being the Frenchman’s last in charge of the club he has managed since 1996.
However, former Liverpool star Barnes feels that Arsenal fans are foolish to be calling for change as there are so few manager who would be worthy of replacing him at The Emirates.
Speaking in an interview with the Daily Star, Barnes said: “Be careful what you wish for.
“Because you want to win the league, don’t tell me who you want to get rid of. Tell me who you want to come in.
“If you get rid of Wenger, who’s there to come in?
“[Jurgen] Klopp is not there, [Antonio] Conte’s not there, [Pep] Guardiola’s not there and [Carlo] Ancelotti’s not there.
“So who’s going to come in that’s better than Wenger? They say [Diego] Simeone.
“He comes into Arsenal and you have to put up with the style of football that he plays.
“Then you have to get rid of five or six of the players straight away because they’re not Simeone players.
“And you’ve got your big players. [Alexis] Sanchez and [Mesut] Ozil – they’re not suited.
“Then what he will say is: ‘When I get rid of these players, I’ve now got to start my own thing. Because these players can’t do what I want. And in the first two or three years, instead of finishing second or third, we’ll maybe finish fifth or sixth.’
“So if Arsenal fans will put up with that, it’s going to be like the [EU referendum] leave campaign.
“You know, we want to leave and then maybe after five years it’s going to be great – but there’s no guarantees.”
Arsenal won the FA Cup for the last two seasons but were forced to settle for a trophyless campaign last term.
The north Londoners have not won the Premier League since 2004.