Local outlet L’Ést Républicain spoke to Frenchman Arsène Wenger about his managerial future as the former Arsenal boss played an exhibition match in honour of Michel Platini’s father Aldo, who incidentally was the first individual to give Wenger a shot at football coaching.
On playing an exhibition match in honour of Michel Platini’s late father, Aldo.
When I got the invitation I responded immediately because I wasn’t able to attend Aldo’s funeral. Now I had the opportunity to show all the respect that I have for him. So I did not hesitate.
Today, it feels like you are just as attached to Nancy as ever.
Yes. My career started here. I have a lot of feeling for Aldo Platini because, alongside the respect that I have for him, he is the one who gave me a chance to start as a manager. I would say that completed my training. He had a way of teaching that was fair and unique. He did pretty well – just look at what his son did. I was able to realise the profound knowledge he had, that one could only get by being in and around football everyday. Football ran through his vein. I have so much respect and admiration for him.
Do you think that without him, you wouldn’t have had the career that you had?
Absolutely not, I wouldn’t have. A successful career comes with a good attitude and desire, but also to meet someone who gives you a chance. And he was the one to do that for me. I was 33. I was incredibly young at the time. I jumped into this rigorous and difficult world, but he had a philosophy of fatalism, which helps to reflect on situations.
Are you missing the touchline?
To be honest, for the moment, I have not really thought about that because I fixed myself something whereby in the first few months I would not take any decisions. So I have not been too worried with that. It is not even going through my head.
So you are not in retirement?
No I am not retired. If I was, I would have been for a long time. I will be 69 in October.
Could we see you as a manager again?
I don’t know, I don’t know.
Are you following Nancy’s results?
Of course. It is a club that is between the first and second division almost eternally. And now they are flirting with even lower. This season they will have to be incredibly concentrated and strong. They will have to be consistent now, they can’t show more holes now. I hope they will get out of this. It was great that they got a result this weekend, because when you lose that many times, it is a psychological thing. Now they need to follow it up with another one straight away. They need to do 2 or 3 results now.