Reports emanating out of Arsenal Football Club suggest that regardless of whether Arsène Wenger stays at Arsenal or not, those in charge have made the decision to pursue the hiring of a sporting director for the club. This would be an interesting development as there have been suggestions in the past Wenger opposed to such an appointment.

LONDON, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 01: Arsene Wenger the Arsenal manager enters the stadium before the match between Arsenal and Burnley in the Barclays Premier League at Emirates Stadium on November 1, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

Sporting Director, Director of Football, whatever you call it, the position means essentially the same thing. This is a senior management figure at a football club that exists between the manager and the board. Depending on the club in question, their duties range from handling day to day aspects of running the club away from the pitch, identifying transfer targets, negotiating transfers and contracts.

The revelation of Arsenal’s intent to bring in a sporting director can be interpreted to mean a few things:

  1. If Wenger leaves, it would be clear that anyone who replaces him will not enjoy the level of influence and control as the Frenchman has during his tenure.
  2. If Wenger stays, the hiring means that this really is his last contract at the club. The formalising of a position influence Wenger has never seen the need for would signify the changing of the guard at Arsenal.