By Richard Clarke

Young British managers are finding it harder than ever to get a foothold in the Premier League, according to Arsène Wenger.

The dismissal of Tony Adams at Portsmouth last week was perhaps overlooked in the wake of Luis Felipe Scolari’s departure from Chelsea. But, in the eyes of the Arsenal manager at least, it was no less important.

Wenger argues that the 2008/09 campaign has seen a number of high profile ex-players depart top-flight clubs. The Frenchman feels that if these names can’t hold down their jobs then who can?

“I was thinking the other day that just this season we have lost Roy Keane, Paul Ince and Tony Adams in six months,” he said.

“That is not just anybody you know that is three massive personalities in English football with top quality – but after six months they are out.

“You cannot complain that there are no English managers if in such a short time three people of this quality lose their jobs.

“It is difficult for me to assess these situations but it is very easy to understand, without judging, if it’s right or wrong.

“The global situation makes it difficult for young managers to come through now. All of them had a different way into their jobs but each faced the same impatience.”

The departures of Adams and Scolari mean that during Wenger’s 12-year-spell in North London an incredible 107 Premier League managers have lost their jobs. That is not far off half the division a season.

That flies on the face of his core principles – stability, consistency and quality. In addition Wenger does not feel competence should be overridden by impatience.

“Yes I believe that technical stability is very important for success,” he said. “If you change a manager every six months you will not develop young players because he knows if he loses three games he is out.

“Where does that end? Most of the problems are financial. So if the directors are convinced that you are not competent enough to do the job then we accept we must pay the price.

“But when it is just superficial measures it is not right.”

Copyright 2017 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to as the source
16 Feb 2009