By 90Min
February 09, 2018

Former Arsenal star turned television pundit Paul Merson has proposed that the Gunners chase Antonio Conte to replace Arsene Wenger in the event that the under-pressure Italian is sacked by Chelsea in the coming weeks or months.

Merson claimed his old team would be missing a trick if they weren't in touch with Conte, who has seen his Chelsea team humiliated by lowly opposition in each of the last two Premier League games, as soon as he becomes available.

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"The day Conte leaves Chelsea, if I was Arsenal, I'd be straight on the phone. Managers like Conte don't come along too often," the 'Magic Man' told Sky Sports.

"Arsenal need someone that is going to go in there and upset people. Conte upsets people. He wants you to play a certain way and he'll make you rock solid at the back. As soon as Arsenal get rock solid at the back, they'll be a force," he added.

"I think Arsenal would say: 'we'd have you next season'. I think they'd be mad if they didn't."

Despite guiding Chelsea to a record breaking Premier League title last season, Conte looks increasingly likely to be relieved of his duties at Stamford Bridge and be replaced by former Barcelona coach Luis Enrique.

Wenger signed a new two-year contract at Arsenal at the end of last season, but with his future up for review at the end of the current campaign there is growing speculation that the Frenchman could finally part ways with the club.

Merson actually seems to be blaming Wenger for Arsenal previously missing out on other top managers, suggesting the Frenchman's insistence on staying robbed the club of chances to hire Pep Guardiola, Jose Mourinho or Jurgen Klopp.

Clive Brunskill/GettyImages

"I think it ticks all the boxes. Arsenal can't keep missing all these managers. You can't tell me Pep Guardiola wouldn't want to have managed Arsenal? If he had that opportunity, he'd have gone to Arsenal in my opinion," Merson commented.

"Jurgen Klopp, Jose Mourinho, they all went to Arsenal's rivals because Wenger was sat there in the manager's seat instead of saying the time was right to leave."

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