Arsenal have reportedly identified Roberto Martinez as the man to lead the club when Arsene Wenger eventually calls time on his Emirates tenure, according to reports in Daily Star.
The Everton boss has further enhanced his reputation during his debut season guiding the Toffees to seventh place so far, behind Manchester United on goal difference and with a game in hand.
The report states that Martinez has impressed Wenger and the rest of the Arsenal hierarchy with the style he has implemented on his teams, as well as the way he handles himself with the media.
The Gunners are reportedly set to confirm Wenger has signed a new two year extension at the Emirates, with his current deal set to expire at the end of the season. But talks with the club are understood to have already begun over whether Martinez would make a suitable long term replacement.
Wenger also spoke earlier this month about the respect he has for the job Martinez has done at Goodison Park this season. He said:
Martinez has done remarkably well
The Spaniard has been at Everton for less than a season, but has already impressed with the excellent work he has carried out to largely keep the Merseyside team in contention for a possible European place. He has a reputation for instructing and coaching his teams to play attractive, aesthetically-pleasing passing football.
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He started his managerial career at Swansea guiding them to become league one champions before taking of the reins at Wigan. The Latics eventually ended up being relegated, but they were on the cusp of dropping down a division long before Martinez arrived and he did well to keep them up for a couple of seasons before doing the unthinkable and winning the FA Cup.
He is often being accused of neglecting the defensive side of things just a tad. However, a quick glance at the current Premier League table demonstrates that Everton has conceded just 27 goals in the top-flight this season, which is the joint second-best defensive record alongside Manchester City.
He would certainly seem to present a good option as the man to eventually replace Wenger at Arsenal. Does he have the charisma of Wenger?