Arsene Wenger
Wenger would reportedly be willing to discuss the role, but join after his Arsenal contract expires. Getty Images


  • Paul Merson believes the Gunners boss would not suit dynamic of international football.
  • Wenger willing to consider replacing Hodgson after Arsenal contract expires in 2017.
  • FA CEO Martin Glenn open to appointing foreign coach after disastrous Euro 2016.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger would not be "right" for the vacant manager's position with England due to international football's varied schedule, according to former midfielder Paul Merson. Wenger is understood to be among the names considered for the role to replace Roy Hodgson, who left following England's European Championship exit at the hands of Iceland.

The Times understand Wenger – who is set to enter his 20<sup>th year with the Gunners – would be interested in discussing the position with The Football Association. However, the Frenchman is unwilling to consider taking over before his contract with the north Londoners expires in the summer of 2017.

Wenger's demands open up the possibility of The FA appointing an interim coach for the next 12 months to guide the team through their opening qualifying fixtures for the 2018 World Cup. Gareth Southgate, the Under-21 coach, is however not interested in the role. FA chief executive Martin Glenn is open to delaying the permanent appointment of a successor to Hodgson but Merson says a move for the Arsenal boss would be ill-advised.

"They're talking about Arsene Wenger, but every year we talk about Arsenal not winning the Premier League because tactically he's not right," he told Talksport. "Arsene is a real hands-on coach, he does all the training, he does everything. But with international football you only see the players every now and then and there's a lot of sitting around.

"I think it's a part-time job anyway. You're essentially paying someone £7m for a part-time job. Every player plays in the Premier League, so it's not like you've got to travel all around the world to see them play. They all play here!"

With Wenger reportedly considering his options after the end of the current season, Arsenal will be required to shed light on his future. The Times reported in May that a two-year extension had been offered to the 66-year-old however an angry rejection from Wenger leaves uncertainty over his position heading into the new campaign.