Ray Parlour urges Arsene Wenger to clarify his future: ‘He’s suffering but the Arsenal fans deserve to know’

Richard Parry
Evening Standard
Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images
Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Former Arsenal midfielder Ray Parlour has called on Arsene Wenger to clarify his position at the club after admitting he had made a decision on his future.

Wenger’s contract expires this summer and, with a two-year extension believed to be in the offing, reports on Sunday suggest that the Frenchman will agree to extend his 20-year stay by another 12 months.

When quizzed by Standard Sport after the 3-1 defeat at West Brom, Wenger admitted for the first time that he made a decision, adding that ‘You will soon know’.

Protests against Wenger were prominent once again, with placards held aloft inside the Hawthorns while a group fans hired a plan to display a banner reading ‘Wenger Out’. Such is the divide among the fans, a second plane flew over the ground with a message of support for the 67-year-old.

And Parlour, who won three Premier League titles and three FA Cups under Wenger, believes his former boss is feeling the strain but urged him to clarify his future at the club.

“Without a doubt [Wenger is suffering],” he told Sky Sport’s Goals on Sunday. “He loves the club to bits but at the moment it’s going against him so much and he doesn’t want to see his team lacking confidence.

“You can see that he is stressed out at the moment. When I played under him you could see he was great fun, but you can see that it’s really getting to him at the moment…the way their playing.

“I don’t think a lot of people will know what he’s going to do. Not even his backroom staff. But he’s probably going to come out – I imagine very soon - and they [the club and fans] deserve to know what is happening next season.”

Wenger and his players came under intense criticism following the defeat at Hawthorns and their apparent inability to defend set pieces.

Parlour admitted that the players need to take a look at themselves, but questioned the club’s transfer policy and whether the ones they’ve signed are good enough.

“Wenger’s more attack minded, but sometimes you have to your common sense as a player…you defend when you have to.

“In game you know when you’re under pressure – you know when you’ve got to weather the storm for ten minutes – but we had leaders and players on the pitch who sorted that out [in my time]. And I don’t know if they’ve got enough of that now.

“I always look at the players they’ve bought in as well. Are they good enough?”

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