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Paulo Sousa reportedly interested in the Arsenal manager job

Let’s not get too worked up over this one.

Stade Reims v Girondins Bordeaux - Ligue 1 Photo by Jean Catuffe/Getty Images

Any time a job the size of Arsenal’s head coaching position comes open, there’s going to be an absolute flood of stories about every coach with even the most tangential interest or qualification being “considered” or “talked about” or other such fuzzy euphemism. As with player rumors, about 97% of these stories can be dismissed pretty quickly, for many reasons. It could be that the prospective manager hasn’t had enough experience, or isn’t good enough, or just isn’t a fit - but the bottom line is, you don’t have to take every managerial rumor all that seriously.

It’s in that vein that this report showed up today:

Paulo Sousa isn’t really a name I am all that familiar with, but at first glance, he wouldn’t seem to be the kind of manager that Arsenal would ideally want. He’s bounced around quite a bit, and has had reasonable success almost everywhere he’s gone - he won the league in Israel and Switzerland, and led Videoton of Hungary into the Europa League, which isn’t the worst record for a manager. He also managed Swansea to a seventh-place finish before moving to Leicester and...lasting three months. He’s now the manager of Bordeaux.

So his record is kind of a mixed bag, with some highs and some pretty significant flat spots. I would say that of all the candidates linked with Arsenal so far since Emery’s departure, Sousa is definitely one of them. His interest may be genuine, but the “interview” was probably one of two things: either a courtesy lunch, in which the Arsenal front office nodded politely and smiled while Sousa recounted his glory days in Hungary, or it’s a ploy by Sousa to get an improved deal at Bordeaux, in much the same way Brendan Rodgers got a better deal at Leicester by being linked to the Arsenal job.

Either way, I wouldn’t hold my breath for the beginning of the Paulo Sousa era at Arsenal if I were you.