Nuno Espirito Santo has refused to be drawn on rumours linking him with the head coach role at Arsenal claiming it would be disrespectful to Unai Emery.
Odds on the Wolves boss taking over from the Spaniard shortened dramatically yesterday with several reports referencing the strong relationship between Arsenal’s Head of Football, Raul Sanllehi, and the 45-year-old’s agent, Jorge Mendes.
Unsurprisingly, when the Portuguese coach faced the media before his team’s Europa League match with Braga, he was questioned about the stories.
“You know me well enough and you know I’m not going to answer that,” was Nuno’s blunt response.
“I wouldn’t ever mention an issue which is not a reality, mainly as speaking about a job which has a manager would be disrespectful and I will not do so.”
Despite a rocky start to the season, which started with Europa League qualifiers in July, Wolves have come on strong in recent weeks and now sit 5th in the Premier League.
While a top-four finish might be a bit of a stretch, they seem to be well placed to make life difficult for traditional Premier League great batters.
“We are doing OK, there is a lot of room to improve, it requires a lot of work but this is what we have been doing since day one when we started in the Championship,” said Nuno.
“There are no distractions at all. I don’t talk about possibilities, I don’t talk about things which are not real, what is real is that we are here, we have to train and prepare ourselves.”
The Portuguese isn’t the only candidate being strongly tipped for the top job at the Emirates. Max Allegri, currently taking a sabbatical after his success at Juventus, and ex-Gunner Mikel Arteta are both in the frame.
It’s looking increasingly unlikely that Patrick Vieira will get a go. Currently in charge of Ligue 1, Nice, the Telegraph reports that he is being lined up as a high-profile coach appointment in the new MLS franchise of David Beckham, Inter Miami.
The US outfit are willing to pay big money to lure Vieira back Stateside – he was previously in charge at Man City’s sister club New York FC – and Nice, currently in 15th place, are aware of the interest. It seems like a bit of a backward step having returned to Europe, but money talks.
Arsenal will face Frankfurt tonight before travelling to Norwich on Sunday. We suspect Emery needs two wins if he has any chance of remaining on the bench when we host Brighton in a week’s time.