Arsenal’s interim manager Freddie Ljungberg has apparently been told that he has to compete for European qualification if he wants to stay at the club beyond this season.
Ljungberg took over from Unai Emery last month and he’s taken charge of four games already, picking up one win, one loss and two draws.
Arsenal have shown steady signs of improvement since Ljungberg’s appointment, but The Daily Mail claims the Swede will not be allowed to stay on in north London if the club don’t compete for a place in either European competition this season.
It’s expected that Ljungberg will at least be Arsenal’s interim manager in the medium term, with a club source telling the Daily Mail the club are not going to be rushed to appoint a new permanent head coach.
The club are prepared to keep the faith with Ljungberg until the end of the season as it would open up more opportunities to appoint a new manager who is currently at another club.
On Arsenal’s long list of managerial targets include some who are currently available to take over, although it’s expected at this stage that neither Carlo Ancelotti or Mauricio Pochettino will be brought in.
Former Valencia manager Marcelino García Toral is also available after he was sacked due to a falling out with their owner Peter Lim.
Waiting until the end of the season, however, would apparently increase Arsenal’s chances of being able to bring either Patrick Vieira or Mikel Arteta back to the club as their next permanent manager.
RB Leipzig’s managerial wonderkid Julian Nagelsmann and Dalian Yifang’s Rafa Benitez are still in their first seasons at their respective clubs so are unlikely to be available anytime soon, while it’s also looking increasingly unlikely that Nuno Espírito Santo will be allowed to leave Wolves.
“The club have said I have to wait until they make a decision, so yeah, I can’t do anything at the moment [regarding the coaching staff],” Ljungberg said ahead of their match against Manchester City. “I have Per but at the same time he is the academy manager, but he is helping me with coaching.
“It’s far from me to say [what’s best for Arsenal]. If you look at the person who was here before, he had a lot of staff and maybe I don’t have so many. So if you keep on going like that for months and months, it’s not so easy. But that’s totally up to the club.”