Tuchel ‘never close’ to replacing Wenger

PUBLISHED: 12:00 28 July 2018

Thomas Tuchel at a press conference while coach of Borussia Dortmund (pic Nick Potts/PA)

Thomas Tuchel at a press conference while coach of Borussia Dortmund (pic Nick Potts/PA)

PA Wire/PA Images

Paris St Germain coach Thomas Tuchel insists timings meant he was never close to replacing Arsene Wenger at Arsenal and has tipped the Frenchman to return to work.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger before the Premier League match at the John Smith's Stadium, Huddersfield.Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger before the Premier League match at the John Smith's Stadium, Huddersfield.

Wenger left Arsenal at the end of last season following nearly 22 years in charge of the Gunners.

The announcement of his departure came on April 20 but Tuchel had already been lined up to take charge of PSG, replacing Unai Emery - the man who would then succeed Wenger at the Emirates Stadium.

Tuchel’s tactical approach at Borussia Dortmund always saw him in the running to follow Wenger in north London but, ahead of the International Champions Cup clash between PSG and Arsenal in Singapore on Saturday, the German said he was already committed to the Ligue 1 champions.

“To be honest I made my decision before Arsene Wenger made his decision,” he said at a pre-match press conference.

“I never got in touch and I made the decision to move to Paris before Wenger took the decision to resign.

“I don’t know if I was ever meant to be his successor or not. I didn’t think about it because there was no question in the situation I was.”

Tuchel, 44, has signed a two-year deal with the Parisian club and will take charge of the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Gianluigi Buffon next season.

While he did not replace Wenger in the dugout at Arsenal, Tuchel does feel as though the former Gunners boss is not yet finished in football management.

“He will keep on coaching,” Tuchel added.

“It isn’t my right to talk about him but I imagine it must be a strange feeling not to manage the shirts from Arsenal because he was more than just a coach.

“He was Arsenal, he is a gentleman, one of the biggest coaches in the world and somewhere I have the feeling he isn’t finished yet.

“I have the biggest respect for him, he built a club that is famously known for its style of football, he is like an idol and a role model for every coach – especially for me.”

Latest Islington Sports News

46 minutes ago

Middlesex batsman Max Holden admitted it felt special to score his first century for the club at Lord’s on Wednesday.

Yesterday, 22:34

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery has revealed he will hand Bernd Leno his debut against Vorskla in the Europa League.

Yesterday, 20:07

Max Holden completed a maiden first-class century in Middlesex colours on a day when he and another of the county’s bright young things shone against Derbyshire at Lord’s.

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery has been speaking ahead of his side’s Europa League clash with FC Vorskla Poltava at the Emirates. Read every word of what he had to say...

Arsenal’s experienced Stephan Lichtsteiner has been speaking ahead of the club’s opening Europa League match of the season against FC Vorskla Poltava. Read on for Layth Yousif’s report from London Colney on Wednesday afternoon.

Yesterday, 08:10

Middlesex opener Sam Robson admitted to a mixture of emotions after scoring his first century of the season on day one of their County Championship Division Two match with Derbyshire.

Tue, 19:27

Sam Robson’s first century of the season saw Middlesex get the better of the opening day of their Specsavers County Championship match with Derbyshire at Lord’s.

Tue, 11:49

Former Barcelona bigwig Raul Sanllehi has become ‘head of football’ at Arsenal after Ivan Gazidis confirmed his departure to AC Milan on Tuesday morning.


Fostering older teenagers means giving them the skills for life as an adult. Here, a supportive lodgings carer with Islington Council and young adult who has left care share their stories

Newsletter Sign Up

Islington Gazette twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read sport

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now