Blazevic the benchmark for Wenger lasting longer than Sir Alex
After Arsenal’s clash with Southampton, Arsene Wenger may only be 150 games away from managing in more Premier League fixtures than Sir Alex Ferguson, but he will need to still be in charge beyond 2023 to eclipse the legendary Manchester United boss in terms of time.
Wenger’s current deal at the Gunners was set to expire at the end of the season but Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis has stated that a new contract will be signed.
It is unknown quite how many more years the new deal will sign Wenger up for, but it is 6/1 that the 64-year-old is still in charge on his 70th birthday and 8/1 that he eclipses Sir Alex’s reign at Man Utd of 27 years.
However, if he is to achieve the latter, Wenger will have to become the oldest manager in Premier League history, a record that is currently held by Sir Bobby Robson from his days in charge of Newcastle.
Robson was 71 years and 194 days when leading Newcastle out for the last time against Aston Villa, while Wenger will be over 72 if still in charge of Arsenal in 2023.
Looking around world football, it is not impossible that Wenger can remain in charge until this age.
After all, Craig Brown was 73 before stepping down as Aberdeen manager in the last 12 months, Giovanni Trapattoni is 75 this year but has not long left the Irish hotseat and Otto Rehhagel of Euro 2004 fame with Greece is now 75 and was in charge of Hertha Berlin in 2012.
But the benchmark has to be Miroslav Blazevic, who is still managing in Bosnia at the age of 78, having previously led Croatia to third place at the 1998 World Cup.
Meanwhile, it is now only 4/9 that Wenger guides Arsenal to another major trophy before leaving the club.