The nickname" Le Professeur" is used by the fans and the British media to reflect Wenger's studious demeanour. His approach to the game emphasis on attacking mentality,with the aim that football ought to be entertaining on the pitch.
In an interview with the Sunday Times in April 2004, Wenger stated that " Football is first and foremost a game. It has a framework,yet should leave some part for freedom of expression. In France,nowadays we seem to have found the right balance between team ,
organisation and the freedom allowed to the player".
Anyone who closely follows the world of soccer(or football) depending on what part of the globe you come from would know about Arsene Wenger's legendary reputation for unearthing and nurturing talented players and transforming unknown or under-performing players into superstars without breaking the bank.
Although Wenger does not shy away from spending big and acquiring established stars when necessary,he is never afraid to give a chance to unknown players without established reputations and strong name recognition.
In an appearance in front of business leaders in 2011, Wenger was asked how does he discover young talents?. This was his answer:
" It is my job to know when something is there. First you need the talents,but also you need to meet someone who believes in you and gives you a chance. You can imagine though, that plenty of people have talent in life but they do not meet someone who gives them a chance.Can you name one Formula One driver from an African Country,apart from South Africa?
And you can really imagine that there is not one guy in Africa with the talent to be a formula one driver?
Why are they not there? Because no one has given them a chance. So in life it's important to meet some one who will give you a chance, and when I can do this in football,i do it".
Thierry Henry is a great example of Wenger's recruitment philosophy. Henry first emerged as a talented teenager under Wenger's tutelage at Monaco,where he frequently coached.
Despite Henry's failure at a big club(Juventus) Wenger brought him to Arsenal less than a year later with plans to move from the wings to a more central position. In doing so, Wenger developed Arsenal's best player ever who currently hold Arsenal's goal scoring record.
Another example in Wenger's philosophy is the signing of the Nigerian Player Nwankwo Kanu from Italian Club,Inter Milan in 1999. Kanu was a talented young player,but his career almost came to an abrupt end when doctors discovered he was suffering from a heart defect. After undergoing a heart valve operation and subsequently suffering from knee injuries,his playing time at Inter was severely limited. Despite his medical condition and lack of playing time, Arsene decided to take a chance on him, stating "(T)his signing is a gamble,but one well worth making because of his huge talent".
Kanu repaid Wenger 's faith in him and went on to have a very successful career,scoring many goals for Arsenal and becoming a fan's favourite.
Lessons For Business Leaders With Regards To Arsene Wenger's Philosophy:
When Wenger recruits a player,he zeroes in on the player's talent and potential and put for less emphasis on irrelevant factors that other managers pay a lot more attention to.
He doesn't care about perceived pedigree or outside observers' opinions of what big names he should pursue. Wenger mostly looks to buy low,develop the player and sell high rather than go for the most expensive players on the market(this still holds true despite recent expensive acquiaitions on Mezut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez).
And he isn't afraid to give inexperienced players an opportunity and convert players to play in different positions,confident in his ability to teach them his system and make them an integral part of the team.
This philosophy has led Wenger to achieve tremendous success at Arsenal,both in terms of the club's financial prosperity and the winning trophies, making the club one of Europe's top club.
Thanks for reading.
Your Suggestions and Comments are welcome.
1.Arsene Wenger's Wikipedia.
2. What Business Managers can learn From Arsenal Manager Arsene Wenger's recruitment Strategy- Linkledon October 14,2014.