Arsene Wenger’s future has caused a split in the Arsenal board, with the club now unlikely to reveal whether their manager will stay or go before the end of the season.
Even after Monday’s humiliating 3-0 defeat at Crystal Palace — which left the dressing room in a ‘morgue-like’ state, according to a source — Wenger has no intention of quitting Arsenal.
However, there are now members of the Gunners top brass who want the Frenchman out at the end of the season, which leaves the club at a crossroads going into the final weeks of Wenger’s current deal.
Arsenal are adamant the decision on whether Wenger signs a new two-year deal will be a mutual one, despite the perception that the 67-year-old will be allowed to decide his own destiny.
Arsenal supporters protested against Wenger in large numbers at Palace in what appeared to be a turning point. Several players were also targeted, notably out-of-form right back Hector Bellerin, who was verbally abused by fans after the final whistle.
Chief executive Ivan Gazidis cut a forlorn figure at Selhurst Park as he watched his team slump to their fifth defeat in eight League matches.
Ultimately, majority shareholder Stan Kroenke — who is being kept updated on growing tensions among the fans — will have the biggest say in Wenger’s future. And the US businessman is still behind the manager, which points to him extending his stay in north London into a 22nd season.