With the Dutchman announcing he won’t sign a new contract and the Giro-Pod flexing its forearms, hell-bent on destroying premiership defences with its bare hands, it’s easy to see how Wenger’s potential nomination of his successor may have slipped through virtually unnoticed in this turbulent summer.
Arsène’s contract runs out on the 30th June 2014. He was quoted last season as ‘wanting to see out his contract’. This was under heavy fire both from the media and from the Arsenal doom squad fans after the club’s worst start to a season in recent memory, but could be taken to mean that he probably won’t renew after this period. It makes sense, if this is the case, to appoint a successor before leaving, thus providing both stability and continuity in a footballing environment which currently has neither.
Stephen Andrew Bould is 50 years old this year and first joined Arsenal in the summer of 1988 for the princely sum of £390,000 (approximately two weeks wages for some of the current mercenaries plying their trade for the light blue oily team). He played for the Gunners over 11 seasons, making a total of 372 appearances and scoring a majestic 8 goals.
Here’s one of Bouldy’s goals from 1991 at 1:36 in this clip. He obviously enjoyed those rare moments!
He won 3 League titles, 2 FA Cups, 1 League Cup and 1 UEFA Cup Winners Cup in his Arsenal career. One of his outstanding highlights as a player came when he provided an Emmanuel Petit style pitching wedge of a chip to put his old mucker Tony Adams through, against Everton in 1998 which topped off a title-clinching 4-0 victory.
Bouldy moved briefly to Sunderland but was soon forced to retire in September 2000. He studied for his UEFA coaching badges and rejoined Arsenal, becoming coach for the youth teams. He was the head coach of Arsenal’s U18 Academy side whom he led to winning the Premier Academy League 2008-2009 and 2009-2010 and FA Youth Cup 2008-2009.
Summer 2012 arrived (well the summer months arrived anyway) and Pat Rice finally retired after 44 years at the club. Steve Bould is appointed assistant manager and immediately talk shifts to how Bouldy can reinforce the Arsenal defence which has shown a worrying trend of leaking more goals each season for the last few years.
When interviewed Steve Bould immediately gives off an air of calm and common-sense, in stark contrast to his old drinking buddy Tony Adams. He is steeped in the traditions that Arsene Wenger has laid as the foundations of the club for many years to come.
The next Arsenal manager? I think so.
Written by chas