The uncertainty surrounding the future of Arsene Wenger continues to plague Arsenal’s season, with just as many fans focusing on his reign as manager in comparison to the end of their campaign. Of course, with every outgoing manager, there needs to be one coming in, and the current rumour doing the rounds is that Newcastle United boss Rafa Benitez could make his way down south to the Emirates.
After two years at St James’ Park it seems odd to consider the possibility of him moving on, especially given the spectacular job he’s done. Benitez has done well to land himself positions at a series of high profile European clubs, but when he went to the Magpies, it was clear he was doing so for a change of pace. It didn’t take long for him to adapt, and now, the club feels like they could legitimately make a run at being a consistent top ten team over the next few years.
So why would he make the move to Arsenal? Well, logically speaking, it makes a lot of sense, because the job has a great deal of appeal. The club’s stature is huge, they’re likely going to be competing in the Champions League next season and beyond, and fans will be eager for a fresh change of pace following more than two decades under the guidance of the Frenchman.
However, Benitez is someone who won’t stay quiet if he doesn’t like something that’s going on at the club he’s managing, and god knows there have been some problems in North London over the last few years. Arsenal have been ridiculed for being bullied in the transfer market, their relationship with the fans and the prices of their tickets. When you add those three things up alone it makes for an uncomfortable atmosphere, and while Wenger has been happy to go along with it, Rafa may not be so kind.
Plus, why would you want to ruin a good thing? Newcastle fans worship the ground he walks on, and while he may be entering his late-50s, he’s still probably got a good few years left in this game. There’s no reason for him to shoot for the stars when he’s already been there, especially given that there’s no guarantee of success.
In terms of the answer to the title question, we do believe there’s a possibility Benitez could thrive with Arsenal, but it’s too much of a risk.
Would Rafa Benitez work as Arsenal manager?