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Honigstein: Wenger *not* on Bayern Munich’s shortlist of coaching candidates | UPDATE: Maybe? Bild claims a meeting is planned!

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The Athletic has learned from a source at the club that Bayern Munich is not in fact considering former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger as a potential replacement.

FC Bayern Muenchen v Arsenal FC - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg
Wenger the last time he visited the Allianz.
Photo by Marc Mueller/Bongarts/Getty Images

Raphael Honigstein of The Athletic has learned that Bayern Munich is not in fact pursuing Arsene Wenger as a potential successor to Niko Kovac:

A source at the German champions told The Athletic on Wednesday afternoon that the Frenchman was currently not among the group of candidates up for discussion.

Bayern’s preference is to wait until after the crucial game against Borussia Dortmund on Saturday to ascertain whether caretaker coach Hansi Flick can be entrusted with the team until the end of the season.

If Bayern is able to wait until the beginning of next season, they could pursue either Thomas Tuchel, under contract with Paris Saint-Germain until 2021, or Erik ten Hag, under contract with Ajax Amsterdam until 2022. Both have indicated that they will not change clubs mid-season in the winter transfer window.

Christian Falk claimed earlier today in an articles published by The Guardian that Wenger was now Bayern’s primary target, but that information now appears incorrect. Falk had argued that Ralf Rangnick and Wenger were Bayern’s two top choices in a slightly earlier article published by Sport Bild.


Or is he already the first choice? Bild doubles down

But wait! There’s more! Bild has doubled down on their earlier claims that Wenger is Bayern’s number-one choice and that a deal is imminent. In an article authored by Jörg Althoff and Christian Falk, Bild states that a conversation between Bayern and Wenger has already taken place and a personal meeting is planned after Bayern’s game against Dortmund on Saturday. The hypothetical plan would be to have Wenger see out the 2019/20 season, after which Bayern can sign a younger coach like Thomas Tuchel or Erik ten Hag.

We will continue to monitor this story.