Arsene Wenger wants to return to management in January, saying he has received “enquiries from all over the world” and does not know whether it will be with a club or a national side.
The former Arsenal manager said he could even be tempted to return to Japan, where he managed before moving to the Premier League in 1996.
However, Wenger dismissed the idea he would join Bayern Munich and said the club should stick with under-fire coach Niko Kovac.
“Yes, it looks like it,” Wenger told Sport Bild when asked whether he is still planning to return to management. “I believe that [I’ll] start again on Jan. 1. I don’t know yet [where I’m headed]. I am rested, and I am ready to work again.”
But Wenger said it’s “not 100 percent” that he will return to club management.
“There are associations, national teams; it could be also [in] Japan,” Wenger said. “Thanks to my 22 years at Arsenal, I have big experience on different levels. There are enquiries from all over the world.”
Wenger also said Mesut Ozil’s withdrawal from international football could be bad for his future.
Ozil decided to quit playing for Germany after the World Cup, saying he was subjected to racism following the team’s group-stage exit, and was widely criticised at home before the tournament over his decision to pose for a photo with Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
“I did not love it that he withdrew from the Germany team [because] the Germans respect what he achieved,” Wenger said. “A small bit of motivation disappears when you know that you don’t have to be ready for a World Cup, a European Championship. I love it when the players are as good as possible. He loses a bit if he does not play at an international level.”
Wenger, 68, also lamented the changing culture in football, saying individual players are gradually gaining more followers than the clubs.
“Footballers played for their club 20 years ago,” Wenger said. “These days, clubs do everything for the players. In the past, [a player] felt guilty when he played bad. These days, clubs feel guilty towards their players and ask themselves what more can be done.
“The fans have become more international. Local fans might stay local fans, and those living in, say, Dortmund and the surroundings will always go to see BVB. But if Ronaldo leaves Real [Madrid] for Juve, the fans follow him to Juve. The international basis is more interested in players than in clubs. This hands a lot of power to the players. Neymar has some 170 million followers. He alone is stronger than the league.”
He also predicted that fans will soon be allowed to determine which players should be substituted during games via social media.
“In the next five years, it might happen that social media substitutes players during a match,” Wenger said. “They’ll have a hook-up at half-time and determine which players get substituted and who will be brought on during the second half. This will happen.
“The power of clubs will only decrease. That’s why the heads in the clubs must become stronger. You must step up the fight against the influence from the outside.”